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Source: Italy
15 October 2008

Convention signed implementing the initiative
"Support for Children of the Palestinian Territories. Medicine at the Service of Peace"

Rome 15 October 2008

A convention has been signed between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Directorate General for Cooperation and the regional administration of Tuscany implementing “Support for Children of the Palestinian Territories. Medicine at the Service of Peace”, an initiative to which Minister Frattini made a personal commitment on his visit to the Palestinian Territories this past July.

The project’s overall cost of 5.7 million euro is to be divided equally between the foreign ministry and the following regions: Tuscany, the initiative’s leader, Emilia-Romagna, Friuli Venezia Giulia and Umbria. The project will be carried out by two NGOs: Israel’s “Peres Center for Peace” in Tel Aviv and Palestine’s “Panorama” located in Ramallah.

The initiative is a new and major undertaking by the Italian government with regard to the Palestinian Territories. It is the first healthcare assistance intervention on behalf of the Palestinian people that calls for direct collaboration between Palestinians and Israelis, albeit at non-governmental level. The intention is to make it possible for seriously ill Palestinian children to be treated in the most advanced healthcare facilities in Israel.

The initiative falls within the scope of the Italian Cooperation’s ongoing healthcare activities in the Palestinian Territories, a sector in which Italy has been recognised as a leader by the international donor community.

Finally, the project bears witness to a trend toward reinforcement of collaboration between MFA and the Italian regions on cooperation initiatives.

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