Bahrain has defended an economic workshop scheduled for next month, saying it aims to empower the Palestinians.
On Sunday, the U.S. announced plans to hold a major conference in Manama, where U.S. officials will unveil the economic aspects of the U.S. back-channel peace plan known as “Deal of the Century”.
"We express sincere appreciation to the Palestinian leadership for its continued efforts and firm stances in protecting the rights of the brotherly Palestinian people and fulfilling their aspirations," Bahrain Foreign Minister Khalid Al Khalifa said on Twitter on Tuesday.
"There is no way to doubt or belittle the peaceful approach of the Palestinian leadership," he said.
The top diplomat affirmed that his country's position "remains supportive of the brotherly Palestinian people in restoring their legitimate rights on their land as well as establishing an independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital, in addition to supporting the Palestinian economy in bilateral and international forums".
He said workshop is part of Bahraini efforts to "empower the Palestinian people through developing their abilities and enhancing their resources"
"The hosting of the workshop serves no other purpose," he stressed.
On Monday, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohamed Shtayyeh said the Palestine-Israel dispute can only be resolved through a political -- rather than economic -- solution.
The umbrella Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), for its part, said that the U.S. administration did not consult the Palestinian leadership regarding the economic meeting.