The Arab summit on Thursday evening at the Safa Palace in Mecca under the chairmanship of King Salman bin Abdul Aziz with Arab leaders confirming their rejection to the Iranian threats. The Secretary-General of the Arab League, Ahmed Aboul Gheit said “that Iraq opposed the final statement, while Iraq reiterates its condemnation of any action that would target the security of the Kingdom and the security of our brothers in the Gulf”. “I would like to clarify that we did not participate in the drafting of the final statement and that Iraq records its objection to the final statement in its current wording “.
At the opening of the summit, Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz called on Arab leaders to take a firm stance on Iran’s actions, which he considered “terrorist”. He stressed during his speech that “Iran is committing terrorist acts directly or through its agents to undermine Arab security,” pointing out that the failure to take a firm and deterrent position to confront the Iranian terrorist practices in the region made it persist to do it.
The King told the summit that the Palestinian issue “remains our primary cause until the Palestinian people get their stolen rights and establish an independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital in accordance with the relevant international resolutions and the Arab peace initiative.”
For his part, the Tunisian president Beji Caid Essebsi, chairman of the current session of the Smmit , condemned in a speech the targeting of safe cities in Saudi Arabia and vessels near the territorial waters of the Arabian Gulf, pointing out that it is unacceptable to drag the region into new chapters of tension.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi stressed that the attacks against Saudi Arabia and the UAE are terrorist attacks that call for international condemnation and represent an occasion to renew the debate on the effectiveness of joint Arab action.
Al-Sisi said that the Arab countries can not tolerate any regional party that threatens their security, stressing that these countries can not accept the presence of foreign occupation forces on the territory of two Arab countries.
The Jordanian King Abdullah II considered that the current Arab summit comes and the Arab countries in dire need to unify the positions, renewing the position of his country, which rejects any interference in the affairs of Arab countries and any threat to its security.
He stressed that the consolidation of stability in the region can not be achieved without a lasting and just solution to the Palestinian issue.
But Iraqi President Barham Salih said in a speech on the occasion that Iran is a neighboring country and must maintain its security, pointing out that Iraq will do its utmost to open the door to constructive dialogue and renounce violence.
Saleh also condemned any hostile action directed at the security of the Gulf States or any Arab or Islamic country, pointing out that “the security of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and the Gulf countries is the security of Iraq.”
For his part, the Emir of the State of Kuwait, Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, called for giving wisdom and resort to dialogue instead of confrontation and facing the escalation witnessed by the region.
This came in a speech by the Kuwaiti Emir, delivered at midnight on Thursday – Friday before the summit.
“We are deeply concerned and great apprehension that the escalation in our region and its grave consequences will add another wound to these wounds,” he said, calling for “containment of that escalation.”
He added: “We are required to face escalation, to initiate contact with the parties of the escalation to persuade them to resort to dialogue.”
He pointed out that “reasons and wrong practices (not specified) behind that escalation require action to correct the wrong paths in dealing the Iranian side with events and developments.”
He added “Our meeting (the Arab summit) comes under sensitive conditions and risks. The meeting reflects the awareness of the seriousness of the escalation and repercussions that threaten our security and stability, which requires us to examine ways to preserve them.”
He reiterated that “the Palestinian issue is the first central issue,” noting that “it is witnessing a decline in the level of world attention.”
In a speech to the summit, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reiterated his country’s non- participation in the Manama Economic Workshop, to be held at the invitation of the US Administration, in Manama, Bahrain, at the end of June.
“Those who want to defend the interests of the Palestinian people must support the position of the Palestinian consensus,” he said.
He stressed , “The absolute rejection of American attempts to bring down international law and international legitimacy (the so-called deal of the century), including the principle of two states on the 1967 borders and East Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Palestine, and the replacement of the principle of land for peace.
The president praised “the decisions of the Arab summit in Tunis in March 2019 and the resolutions of the Arab summit in Dhahran in April 2018 (the Jerusalem summit), which confirmed its rejection of the decisions of the US administration regarding Jerusalem, refugees, borders, security and settlement”
“We do not accept any threat to Arab security and Palestinian security is part of the Arab national security,” he said.
The statement reads as follows:
“Final communiqué issued by the extraordinary session of the Council of the League of Arab States at the summit level”.
In response to the generous invitation from the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud to his brothers the leaders of the Arab countries to discuss the serious repercussions of the attack by the Houthi-backed terrorist organizations supported by Iran on two oil pumping stations in Saudi Arabia and the attack on commercial vessels in the territorial waters of the UAE United Arab Emirates.
In accordance with Article III of the Charter of the League of Arab States for the periodic convening of the Summit, the Council of the League of Arab States held an extraordinary session in the city of Mecca on 25 Ramadan 1440H (30 May 2019)., where the Arab leaders discussed these developments and their implications for Higher Arab Interests, and the deliberations concluded by emphasizing on the following positions:
1. Condemns the actions of the Iranian-backed terrorist Houthi militias by crossing via drones over the two oil pumping stations inside Saudi Arabia and the sabotage done against commercial vessels in the territorial waters of the United Arab Emirates.
2. Emphasize that the Arab States seek to restore security stability in the region and that the only true way is to respect all States in the region for the principles of good neighborly relations, to refrain from the use of force or threat to use it , and to interfere in the internal affairs of States and to violate their sovereignty; and the behavior of the Iranian Islamic republic in the region contradicts those principles and undermines the requirements of confidence and thus threatens the security and stability in the region , a direct and serious threat, stressing that the relations of cooperation with the Arab countries and the Islamic Republic of Iran must be based on the principle of good neighborliness and non-interference In the internal affairs of States and respect for its sovereignty.
3 – Emphasize the solidarity and unity of Arab countries with each other in the face of Iranian interference in its internal affairs, either directly or indirectly with the aim of destabilizing its security and stability and intensify the means of cooperation and coordination between them in the face of the risks that result from it.
4. Condemns the continued firing of Iranian-made ballistic missiles into Saudi Arabia from Yemeni territory by the Huthi militias of Iran, thus threatening the Arab national security and asserting Saudi Arabia’s right to defend its territory in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and supporting its actions against those Attacks under international law.
5. Condemns continued Iranian support for the Houthi anti-government militias in Yemen.
6. Condemns and denies the continuing Iranian interference in the internal affairs of the Kingdom of Bahrain, supporting terrorism, training terrorists, smuggling weapons and explosives and inciting sectarian strife to destabilize security, order and stability.
7. To condemn the continued occupation by Iran of the three occupied islands of the United Arab Emirates and to support all peaceful measures taken by the United Arab Emirates to restore its sovereignty over its occupied islands.
8. Continuation of the restriction of satellite channels funded by Iran on Arab satellites.
9. Intensify the diplomatic efforts between the Arab countries and regional and international organizations to highlight Iran’s practices that endanger peace and security in the region, and call upon the international community to take a firm stand against Iran and its destabilizing activities in the region; and to stand firmly against any Iranian attempts to threaten the security of the energy, freedom and safety of naval installations in the Arabian Gulf and other waterways, whether carried out by Iran or through its arms in the region.
10. Rejecting the Iranian intervention in the Syrian crisis and its implications for Syria’s future, sovereignty, security, independence, national unity and territorial integrity, and that such intervention does not serve the efforts to settle the Syrian crisis according to the content of Geneva 1 and the relevant international resolutions. Regarding the Palestine issue, the Central Arab Cause, the summit affirmed its adherence to the resolutions of the 29th Arab Summit in Dhahran, the “Jerusalem Summit”, as well as the resolutions of the 30th Arab Summit in Tunis.
At the end of their meeting, the Arab leaders expressed their thanks and appreciation to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and the people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for their warm reception and hospitality and for their excellent organization and preparation for the work of this summit.
Rawabet Center for Researches and Strategic Studies