Ramallah: Prime Minister Narendra Modi was on Saturday conferred the ‘Grand Collar of the State of Palestine’, the highest Palestinian honour for foreign dignitaries, recognising his contributions to promoting relations between India and Palestine.

President Mahmoud Abbas bestowed the Grand Collar of the State of Palestine on Modi after the conclusion of their bilateral meeting in Ramallah. Modi is the first Indian Prime Minister to make an official visit to Palestine.

The Grand Collar is Highest order given to foreign dignitaries—Kings, Heads of State/Government and persons of similar rank. During their joint press statement after their bilateral meeting, Abbas said the interaction was a good opportunity to express to prime minister Modi “how much respect and how high of a standing you personally have through your wise and creative and brave leadership and in establishing peace and stability foundations in our region and the world.

“In recognition of that, we have had the honour today to decorate you with the highest order of honour in Palestine and that is the great the grand order of the state of Palestine," the Palestinian president said.

Modi, on his part, said, that bestowing the honour on him was a matter of proud moment for India. This was also the reflective of the friendship between India and Palestine. The ‘Grand Collar of the State of Palestine’ has in the past been awarded to King Salman of Saudi Arabia, King Hamad of Bahrain, President Xi Jinping of China, among others.

The commendation reads “In recognition of his wise leadership and his lofty national and international stature, and in appreciation of his efforts to promote the historic relations between the State of Palestine and the Republic of India; in acknowledgment of his support to our people’s right to independence and freedom so that peace prevails in the region." PTI

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