Mahmoud Abbas to visit the Union for the Mediterranean Headquarters in Barcelona
The President of the Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, supports the Union for the Mediterranean initiative. The UfM decided to build its first project in Gaza: a desalinisation water plant and distribution system. Abbas will meet with the new Secretary General of the UfM, Youssef Amrani, who took office last week.
Barcelona (ACN).- The President of the Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, will visit the headquarters of the Secretariat of the Union for the Mediterranean, which are located in Barcelona. Abbas will come next Wednesday (July 20th) and will meet with UfM\u2019s new Secretary General, the Moroccan Ambassador Youssef Amrani. Amrani took office last week, replacing Ahmad Masa\u2019deh, from Jordany, who resigned in early 2011. Abbas will give its explicit support to the Union for the Mediterranean and to its work, in particular to a project the UfM will develop in Gaza. The UfM will build a desalinisation water plant and distribution system in Gaza, which will help to address a \u201Csevere water deficit for a population of 1.6 million\u201D. This plant is the first ever project \u201Clabelled\u201D by the UfM, which was approved unanimously by all 43 Member States of the organisation.
The UfM brings together all the European Union states with all the countries from North Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean. The desalinisation project in Gaza was a proposal by the UfM Secretariat, which has its permanent headquarters in Barcelona, in the Palau de Pedralbes. The UfM works around six thematical areas: transport & urban development; energy; environment & water; higher education & research; social & civil affairs; and, project funding & business development. The areas of water, with this desalinisation project, and energy, with a project to develop solar energy in North Africa, are the most advanced. However, the UfM\u2019s work evolves extremely slowly due to the Palestine-Israeli conflict, the moment many Arab countries are going through and the European Union not really considering it a high priority. In fact, Former Secretary General Dr. Masa\u2019deh resigned because of this stagnation. The UfM is solving this situation by focusing on technical and field projects, such as Gaza\u2019s water plant.