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The Emir H H Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, H H Sheikha Moza bint Nasser and the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister H E Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem bin Jabor Al Thani at the luncheon banquet hosted by Prime Minister Ismail Haniyah in the Gaza Strip yesterday.
Gaza: The Emir H H Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani yesterday laid the foundation stone of Hamad Residential Town in Gaza Strip during a ceremony attended by Prime Minister Dr Ismail Haniyah.
The ceremony was also attended by H H Sheikha Moza bint Nasser and the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister H E Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem bin Jabor Al Thani and members of the Emir’s delegation.
Amal Mohamed Haniyah, wife of Dr Haniyah, a number of ministers and officials in Gaza and members of the Legislative Council also attended.
The ceremony started with a recitation from the holy Quran followed by a speech by the Minister of Public Works in the defunct Palestinian government Dr Youssuf Abul Ghareez in which he welcomed the visit of the Emir and Sheikha Moza.
He also welcomed the Prime Minister and hailed the efforts of Qatar in support of the Palestinian people, especially in the Gaza strip, describing the visit as historic.
Afterwards Dr Ismail Haniyah gave a speech in which he welcomed the visit of the Emir and Sheikha Moza, stressing that the visit is an official announcement of the break of the political and economic siege of Gaza strip.
Haniyeh said: “Gaza is receiving today a man of the nation and an Arab and Muslim leader,” pointing out that the visit of the Emir is a visit by the first Arab leader to Palestine and the besieged Gaza, despite all the challenges, difficulties and axes of evil that only want to see Gaza wounded and besieged. “
Dr Haniyah said the visit is communicating a message to the world that Gaza is not alone, that Palestine is in the axis, and the Arabs, led by the Emir assert that Palestine inhabits the hearts of millions of the world’s free people.”
Addressing the Emir, Haniyah said: “You are a dear guest, beloved to the hearts of millions of Palestinians, and you, through this visit, officially announced the break of the political and economic blockade clamped on the Gaza Strip. We, as a great people, today welcome a great man... today we are breaking the siege.. Thank you, Your Highness the Emir... thanks to Qatar. “
“We today announce the victory over the siege through this blessed historic visit that will go down in history and will be remembered by the Palestinian and Arab nation generations.”
Later the Emir and Dr Haniyah witnessed the signing of a number of agreements between the two sides. A project for the establishment of Hamad Residential Town and a project for the construction Hamad Hospital for Rehabilitation and Prosthetic Limbs, a project to re-build Salah Al Din Street and a project to re-build Rashid Street (the coastal road) and a project for re-building Al Karama Street were signed
The Emir approved the top-up of the Qatari grants for Gaza rehabilitation projects from the $264m to $415m for all projects.
The Hamad Residential Town project includes 1060 residential units, two schools, a health centre, a commercial centre and a mosque in addition to infrastructure facilities, roads and green spaces. QNA