PLO leader apologizes to Kuwait
PLO leader Mahmud Abbas on Sunday apologized to Kuwait for the organization's support of the 1990 Iraq invasion after arriving on a landmark visit to the emirate. "We apologize to Kuwait and the Kuwaiti people for what we did," Abbas told reporters when asked to comment on the PLO's position during the invasion.
"We consider the issue of the position of the Palestinian Authority towards the Iraqi invasion as over. We welcome the visit" of Abbas, Kuwait's Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah told reporters Saturday.
Kuwait had demanded the apology from Yasser Arafat, who died last month.
Before Abbas' arrival, the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) welcomed Sabah's statements. Dr. Hassan Abu Labdeh, director of the office of Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmad Qurei, told the Palestinian radio, "We welcome these statements which precedes the Palestinian delegation's visit to sisterly Kuwait today and we've been working since the end of the first Gulf War on restoring relations with the State of Kuwait toward bolstering ties between Palestine and Kuwait."
Abu Labdeh said that the PNA is keen on improving ties with Gulf states, mainly Kuwait. He hoped that bolstering Kuwaiti-Palestinian ties would result in many future agreements between the two sides.