The town of Tralee, in County Kerry, Ireland, became the first Irish town to formally twin with a Palestinian municipality, at a ceremony in Tralee, on Monday morning.

Representatives from Beit Sahour, in the Bethlehem district, including town mayor Jehad Khair and Palestine’s Ambassador to Ireland, Ahmad Abdelrazak, attended the event where Mayor Khair and Mayor Graham Spring, of Tralee, signed the historic agreement.

Last summer, Kerry County Council, in the south-west of Ireland, passed an unopposed motion to twin the town of Tralee with Beit Sahour.

Mayor Jehad Khair, of the municipality, welcomed the initiative and said he looks forward to developing strategic relationships to facilitate real and meaningful collaboration, in as many areas as possible, such as tourism, agriculture, local industry and investment.

Moreover, cultural exchanges will enable the people of Tralee to experience life in Palestine under Israeli occupation, and to witness the ongoing oppression for themselves. It also allows them to demonstrate solidarity with the people of Palestine and to develop a close partnership in support of the Palestinian right to self-determination.

However, PNN further reports, this is only the beginning. Kheir has called on other towns to develop links with Palestinian municipalities. Meanwhile, representatives from refugee camps have spoken of the huge impact, extending similar links to specific camps that would also benefit from the engagement.

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