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FM, Hungarian counterpart stress keenness to enhance wider cooperation

By JT - Nov 24,2021 - Last updated at Nov 24,2021

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi holds talks with Hungarian Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto on Wednesday (Photo courtesy of Foreign Ministry)

AMMAN — Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi on Wednesday held talks with Hungarian Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto.

The talks focused on means to enhance cooperation between the countries, the latest regional and international developments of mutual interest, and efforts exerted to solve regional crises, according to a Foreign Ministry statement. 

The two ministers stressed keenness on activating efforts to expand cooperation in various fields, mainly at the economic, investment, educational, cultural, tourism, medical and defence levels, and within the strategic partnership with the EU and NATO.

Both ministers also reviewed regional developments, mainly those pertaining to the Palestinian issue. Safadi acquainted Szijjarto with the Kingdom’s efforts, in coordination with the Palestinian National Authority and partners in the international community, to find real political ground that can resume serious and effective negotiations to achieve just and comprehensive peace based on the two-state solution and international law. 

Safadi also stressed the importance of joint efforts to avoid any illegal procedures that can undermine the two-state solution, mainly those related to the establishment and expansion of illegal settlements, as well as the confiscation of land.

He also reiterated the importance of respecting the historical and legal status quo in Jerusalem and its Islamic and Christian holy sites, which are a top priority for His Majesty King Abdullah, the custodian over these sites, and rejecting all practices that challenge the status quo.

He also referred to the Kingdom’s efforts in supporting UNRWA and briefed his Hungarian counterpart on the outcomes of the international ministerial conference to support UNRWA, which was co-organised by Jordan and Sweden with the aim of mobilising political and financial support for the UN agency and bridging its budget deficit.

In joint remarks to the press following the discussions, Safadi said that he and his Hungarian counterpart went over means to enhance cooperation and coordination between the countries.

Safadi said that a memorandum of understanding was signed on the Hungarian scholarship programme for Jordanian students between 2022 and 2024, and another on educational and scientific cooperation. The signing of more cooperation agreements is underway in the fields of water and the avoidance of double taxation, he added.

The minister noted that mid-December will witness two additional flights between Amman and Budapest, and another two between Aqaba and Budapest, which will strengthen tourism exchange between the countries. 

He also highlighted the importance for the international community to continue providing aid to refugees, acquainting the Hungarian minister with efforts exerted by the Kingdom to secure decent living conditions for refugees and challenges Jordan currently faces in light of decreasing international concern and support in the refugee issue.

The refugee issue is an international problem and not just the responsibility of host countries, Safadi stressed, praising all the support offered by partners and friends, mainly in the EU, to enhance support for Jordan to meet the need of refugees.  

He also acquainted Szijjarto with the Kingdom’s efforts to reach a political solution to the Syrian crisis, which is a crisis that “we all agree it should end” through a political solution that preserves Syria’s unity and restores its security, stability and role. 

For his part, Szijjarto said that his country is keen on developing its bilateral ties with the Kingdom in the economic, investment, educational and defence fields, and referred to continuous cooperation in facing the COVID-19 pandemic and offering technical assistance in this regard. 

He also conveyed his country’s appreciation to the Kingdom’s efforts in enhancing regional security and stability and boosting the values of tolerance and moderation in the world, noting that the Kingdom is a model in dealing with Christians of the Mashreq (eastern Arab world), interfaith dialogue and accepting others.

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