Erdogan supports Gaza reconstruction conference in Istanbul
|Thursday, June 18,2009 07:20|
Turkish prime minister Tayyeb Recep Erdogan and seven of his ministers have sent Wednesday a letter of support and solidarity to the conference of the International Arab Agency for the reconstruction of Gaza that was held in the Turkish city of Istanbul, whishing them all the best.
Although he apologized for not attending the conference due to previous official engagements he had, Erdogan expressed hope that the conference would achieve its objectives in supporting the besieged Palestinian people and in alleviating their suffering.
Another strong boost for the conference came from chairman of the Turkish Unity Party who sent similar message of best wishes to the conference, urging the participants to do all they could to soothe pain and suffering of the 1.5 million Palestinians cordoned in the tiny coastal Strip.
The conference was inaugurated amidst strong participation from 30 Arab, Muslim, and European countries. The Agency comprises around 60 international organizations that first met in Beirut last March where they established the Agency"s governing body.
According to an Agency official, the main objective of the organization was to reconstruct the Gaza Strip after the wide devastation inflicted on it during the monstrous Israeli war last January.
According to officials of the Agency, a special Fund will be established to achieve the purpose where Arab, Muslim, and European Engineering, economic, and financial efforts would be integrated and coordinated.
The conference was considered as the biggest gathering of business people organized by the Agency.
In an interview with the Quds Press, Jordanian unionist Badi Al-Rafaya"a, member of the Agency"s supreme committee, explained that the Istanbul gathering aims at rebuilding the Gaza Strip away from "politicized" money, alluding to the Sharm Al-Sheikh conference where five billion dollars were pledged for the reconstruction of Gaza but suspended until Hamas Movement bows to the Quartet Committee conditions, including recognizing the Israeli occupation of Palestine.
Rafaya"a explained that feasibility studies were carried out for a number of projects that need investors to sponsor, adding that the focus would be first on the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip before expanding the reconstruction efforts to the rest of the occupied Palestinian territories away from politics and away from political disputes on the Palestinian arena.
"We would promote more construction projects, and we would exert all efforts to finance them in addition to extending the necessary engineering plans to implement them", Rafaya"a underlined.