Nabil Shaath, advisor to President Mahmoud Abbas for external affairs and international relations, has affirmed that Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono is collecting signatures of Japanese parliamentarians to demand the government to recognize the State of Palestine.

He told Voice of Palestine that Japan will recognize Palestine gradually, and is expected to raise the level of Palestinian diplomatic representation in the country from delegation to a representative office.

Shaath said, “Japan supports the formation of a new international framework for managing the peace process, breaking free from US monopoly over it.”

He added, according to WAFA, that Japan is committed to political and financial support of Palestine and has renewed its commitment towards financing water projects in the Gaza Strip and increasing its financial contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) to cover the deficit after the US has decided to slash funding for the humanitarian agency.