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Arabs will issue direct peace call to Israel

posted on 29/03/2007: 667 views

Riyadh - Arab leaders meeting in Riyadh decided yesterday to issue a direct call to the Israeli government and people to accept an Arab peace offer and negotiate.

The Arab League heads of state "reaffirm their call to the government of Israel and all Israelis to accept the Arab peace initiative and seize the opportunity to resume the process of direct and serious negotiations on all tracks," a resolution adopted unanimously at the Arab Summit said. A minister said it was adopted in a closed session.

The resolution also mandated a ministerial committee formed in 2002 to set up working teams to undertake contacts with the UN chief, the Security Council, the Quartet "and concerned parties" to seek a resumption of talks.

The declaration came as Saudi King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz chastised Arab leaders for infighting and said their divisions have fuelled turmoil around the Mideast. He also prodded them to take united action.

King Abdullah opened the summit with a strongly worded speech, painting a bleak picture of the crises and bloodshed in the region - from Lebanon and Sudan to Iraq - and telling leaders that it was time to act.

Following the opening of the summit yesterday, Syrian President Bashar Al Assad held talks with Prince Saud Al Faisal, Saudi Foreign Minister.

Syrian Vice-President Farouq Al Shara'a said a tripartite summit, involving the Saudi monarch, the Syrian President and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, will take place today. (Emirates News Agency, WAM)


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