Malta, Cyprus to set up joint diplomatic missions in Mid-East

Malta has signed two agreements with Cyprus on the setting up of joint diplomatic representations in Tel Aviv and Ramallah.

The agreements, which were signed by Foreign Affairs Minister Tonio Borg and his Cypriot counterpart Markos Kyprianou, followed discussions between the two during official talks in Malta in July this year.

The move is part of a programme to extend the reach of the Maltese diplomatic service in a cost-effective way. Through these memoranda, Malta will share offices in the Cypriot Embassy in Tel Aviv, whereas Cyprus and Malta will open a joint diplomatic representation in Ramallah.

Dr Borg said the agreement was an affirmation of direct and mutual interests of both countries in the Mediterranean and in particular in the Middle East peace process.

It also represented a consolidation of cooperation as members of the European Union as well as of other European institutions, notably the Organisation of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe.

He pointed out that this was the first such joint collaboration with Cyprus and in the spirit of its strong conviction of having an independent and sovereign state of Palestine living side by side with Israel in peace and security, Malta chose to open the two diplomatic representations.

With these two memoranda the number of diplomatic missions representing Malta abroad will go up to 26.

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