A visiting Palestinian minister has said that his people are hopeful that a Palestinian state will be declared during the presidency of Barack Obama, but they are wary of Israel's attitude to peace.
"We are hopeful. Insha Allah (God willing), we will soon see a declaration of a Palestinian state," Palestinian Religious Affairs Minister Sheikh Jamal Bawatna said in an interview with The Sunday Times. On Friday, he declared open the Yasser Arafat mosque, built with Palestinian funds, in Beruwala, delivered the sermon and conducted the prayers. Excerpts from the interview: