Venezuela and Palestine Establish Official Ties in Wake of Gaza War
Palestinian officials established formal ties on Monday with Venezuela and opened a diplomatic mission in the South American country.
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki thanked President Hugo Chavez’s government for its support during the recent Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip, which prompted the Venezuelan leader to break off relations with Israel.
Venezuelan-Palestinian relations have warmed as tensions have grown between Chavez’s government and Israel. >>>
The administration seeks changes that would permit aid to Palestinians even if officials backed by Hamas, which has been designated a terrorist group, become part of a unified Palestinian government.
The Obama administration, already on treacherous political ground because of its outreach to traditional adversaries such as Iran and Cuba, has opened the door a crack to engagement with the militant group Hamas.
The Palestinian group is designated by the U.S. government as a terrorist organization and under law may not receive federal aid.
But the administration has asked Congress for minor changes in U.S. law that would permit aid to continue flowing to Palestinians in the event Hamas-backed officials become part of a unified Palestinian government. >>>