Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told Britain's Prince William on Wednesday that the Palestinian leadership remains serious and interested in achieving peace with Israel based on 1967 borders.
William started his three-day tour of Israel and the West Bank on Monday with a visit to Jerusalem's Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial center, followed by meetings with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Reuven Rivlin. During the meeting, Rivlin asked the Duke of Cambridge to send Abbas a message of peace.
William's visit in Israel is part of a historic Middle East tour, marking the first official visit to the Holy Land by a member of the British royal family.
Prince William leaves Israel, after a 3 day visit
Taking off from Tel Aviv, air traffic control wished him a safe flight, and bid farewell to Paul Sexton, lead Airbus A330 Captain at Royal Air Force, on his last flight before retirement. LISTEN HERE
Prince William visits great-grandmother’s tomb, Western Wall
On Thursday, William laid a wreath on the grave of his great-grandmother, Princess Alice, before praying with a Russian Orthodox priest at the Church of Mary Magdalene in Jerusalem.
After the church visit, he proceeded on to the Western Wall, where he said a prayer at one of Judaism’s holiest sites. He was accompanied by Western Wall Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovitch during his visit to the Kotel.
Prince William meets Abbas in Ramallah
Prince William, second in line to the throne, received a red-carpet welcome to the Muqata, the Palestinian government headquarters in the city of Ramallah, that included an honour guard and band.
"I'm very glad our two countries work so closely together and have had success stories with education and relief work in the past, so, long may that continue," William told Abbas at the start of their meeting.
"My sentiments are the same as yours in hoping that there is a lasting peace in the region," the prince said.
Abbas told William that the Palestinian leadership remains serious and interested in achieving peace with Israel based on 1967 borders.
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Britain's Prince William enters West Bank to meet Palestinian president
Britain's Prince William traveled to the West Bank on Wednesday to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
William, on the first official British royal visit to Israel and the Palestinian Territories, will see Abbas in the West Bank city of Ramallah.
Prince William meets Israeli Eurovision winner in central Tel Aviv
The Duke of Cambridge began the second full day of his historic royal visit to Israel Wednesday by strolling Tel Aviv's trendy Rothschild Boulevard. There he met Netta Barzilai, winner of this year's Eurovision song contest, and had a cold drink at one of the boulevard's famous kiosks.
He then attended a cultural event at a museum where he met young people engaged in youth activism. The prince, second in line to the throne, then travels to the West Bank to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Security guards at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's residency detained Associated Press senior television producer Tuesday due to his Albanian citizenship.
Nebi Qena, who has worked for news agency AP's offices in Israel for the past three years, was reportedly asked by the residency's security guards "whether he was Muslim."
Israeli Jews and Arabs share soccer field for first time as teammates, not opponents, during royal visit
During the first official visit by a member of the British royal family to Israel, the Duke of Cambridge made time to watch a soccer game cosponsored by the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation and The Equalizer – a sports and educational program for marginalized Israeli youth.
Prince William conveys a message to the people of Israel
At the British ambassador's residence in Ramat Gan, Prince William spoke in the presence of Israeli politicians such as Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev, Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi, Opposition Leader Isaac Herzog, diplomats such as U.S. Ambassador David Friedman, and Israeli celebrities.
Prince William said his visit to Yad Vashem "was a profoundly moving experience" and spoke of his great-grandmother, Princess Alice, who was declared Righteous Among Nations for saving Jews during the Second World War and whose grave the Prince is scheduled to visit.
Prince William spoke of "Israel's remarkable story" as "one of inventing, creating, innovating, and striding confidently into its future." He spoke of the children he met at the Jewish-Arab soccer match and called Israel a "Start-Up Nation."
The prince added that "The ties between our two countries have never been stronger, whether in our record levels of trade and investment, our cooperation in science and technology; or the work we do together to keep our people safe."
Speaking of the political situation, Prince William said: "This region has a complicated and tragic history – in the past century the people of the Middle East have suffered great sadness and loss. Never has hope and reconciliation been more needed. I know I share a desire with all of you, and with your neighbours, for a just and lasting peace."