Arab summit concludes with strong appeal for regional peace, unity

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The yearly Arab League (AL) summit concluded in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, with unwavering stands for preserving regional peace and unity, especially the problems related to Jerusalem, Syria, Yemen and Iran.

According to an official AL announcement released by Saudi Press Agency after the summit, decades-long Palestinian-Israeli conflict is the “core issue” concerning the entire Arab world, which firmly insists the fact that East Jerusalem is the capital of the State of Palestine.

The AL strongly opposes Trump administration’s recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital and its decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The AL calls for other countries to not follow the US measures to harm Arab states’ sovereignty.

A picture taken on February 24, 2018 shows the US flag flying over the US consulate building complex in Jerusalem, which is considered one of the options to host the new US embassy headquarters after its relocation from Tel Aviv. /VCG Photo

UN resolutions shall be the only norms in negotiating the conflict, and Israel’s unilateral actions could only tamper the facts and hamper the peace process, it said.

Referring to the Yemen crisis, the AL applied stern words to accuse Iran of supporting the Shiite Houthi rebels who ousted Yemen’s internationally-recognized government and frequently launched missile attacks on Saudi Arabia, including capital Riyadh and Muslim holy city Mecca.

“We urge the international community to sanction Iran and forbid it to back Houthi terrorists and provide them missiles,” the statement said. “All these have violated the UN 2216 resolution and international law.”

It voiced support for the Saudi-led Arab coalition’s operations in Yemen to preserve Yemen’s sovereignty and integrity, and demanded opening key ports and airports for aids to enter Yemen so as to ease the world’s most serious humanitarian crisis there such as famine and outbreak of cholera.

Jordanian King Abdullah II (C-R) meet with Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun (C-L) and Prime Minister Saad Hariri (2L) on the sidelines of the Arab League summit in Dhahran, April 15, 2018. /VCG Photo

“Iran must withdraw its army from Arab world, especially Syria and Yemen, and stop interfering in other states’ affairs,” the AL added.

Meanwhile, the summit reiterated that political solution is the only path for Syria to realize peace. Only eliminating terrorist groups and cutting off world powers’ meddling could create chance for Syrian people to build an independent Syria.

The AL also denounced use of chemical weapons in any place, requiring an international investigation in accordance with international regulations into any such case.

The one-day summit was held Sunday in eastern Saudi city of Dhahran. Tunisia is to host the 30th AL summit next year.

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