In a telegram sent to the prime minister, Abbas said: “We followed with great interest and gratitude your last TV meeting, and your honorable and original statements about the official Pakistani positions that are firm and supportive of the just Palestinian cause.”
“This matter is not new to the brotherly Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the leadership, government, people and history,” he said, adding that Pakistan is “a source of pride” for every Palestinian in the world.
“We highly appreciate your adherence to your position in support of the Palestinian people to obtain their legitimate rights, despite the pressures that you are subjected to, which confirms your courage, originality and the strength of your resolve, and your commitment to support the causes of people demanding justice.”
The Palestinian president’s comments come days after Khan’s revelation that Islamabad is under growing pressure from friendly countries to recognise Israel. However he reiterated Pakistan’s position that it will not do so without a fair settlement for the Palestinians.
Although Khan told local media that “Israel’s deep influence in the US” was behind the pressure, he was asked if Muslim countries were also urging the move, to which Khan responded: “There are things we cannot say. We have good relations with them.” It is likely that such pressure has come from Gulf states which Pakistan relies on for both oil and financial support who have normalised ties with Israel not excluding Saudi Arabia which has established overt and covert ties with Tel Aviv over the years.