Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi has received a written letter from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday requesting support for Palestinians living in Iraq.
The number of Palestinian refugees in Iraq has reached around 34,000, most of whom are based in the capital of Baghdad, according to official figures.
According to a statement issued by the Iraqi government, of which Anadolu Agency received a copy, the letter was delivered by the Palestinian president’s envoy and Deputy Secretary-General of the Fatah Movement Jibril Rajoub during his meeting with Al-Kadhimi in Baghdad.
The statement disclosed: “Rajoub carried a letter from the Palestinian president to the Iraqi prime minister, requesting Iraq’s support for the Palestinians.”
According to the statement, Al-Kadhimi conveyed: “The Palestinian cause rests in the Iraqi conscience and heart. Palestinians living in Iraq are not treated as foreigners, but their temporary presence aims to secure their right to return to their homeland and determine their fate on their land,” calling for “unifying the Palestinian ranks and strengthening internal unity.”
On Wednesday evening, Rajoub arrived in Baghdad on an official two-day visit, in response to a previous invitation from Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein, according to local media.
Rajoub’s visit comes a day after the Iraqi parliament discussed amending the foreigners’ residency law to consider Palestinians residing in the country for more than ten years as Iraqi citizens.
The amendment stipulates: “Any Palestinians who live in Iraq for ten years are treated as equals to Iraqis in rights and duties, without acquiring Iraqi nationality, or participating or voting in the elections, to preserve his/her right to return to his/her homeland.”