Arab League's final draft resolution calls for Arab joint force

Ahram Online , Sunday 29 Mar 2015

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi
Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, center, Arab League Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby, left, and Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri, preside over a meeting of Arab heads of state, in Sharm el Sheik, South Sinai, Egypt, Saturday, March 28, 2015 (Photo: AP)

The Arab League's final draft resolution calls for establishing a Joint Arab force to counter growing security threats. However, the statement left the decision to participate in these forces to each and every country in accordance to its will.

The force will intervene to meet challenges that threaten the security and safety of any Arab League member at the request of the concerned state; a decision over which Iraq reportedly voiced reservations.

The final statement, which is expected to be issued later on Sunday, backed military operations carried out in Yemen by a Saudi-led coalition, urging the Houthi rebels to carry out "an immediate withdrawal from the capital Sanaa and government institutions and to surrender their weapons to the legitimate authorities."

The resolution stressed the need for an urgent response to Yemeni President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi's call for a conference in Saudi Arabia under the auspices of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

The League summit, held in the Egyptian resort city of Sharm El-Sheikh, called for Arab countries to support Palestine's budget for one year starting next April, and also supported the Palestinian Central Council's resolutions calling for a review of political, economic and security relations with Israel to put pressure on Tel Aviv to respect the signed agreements and international legitimacy resolutions.

Iraq reiterated its objection to any military intervention in any other country, and called for dialogue as a means to resolve problems. As for Lebanon, it stressed the need for any move to be based on Arab consensus.

The resolution called on Arabs to provide full political and logistic support to the legitimate government in Libya, including the national army.

Arab leaders urged the UN Security Council to quickly lift the embargo on arms imports to the Libyan government, as it is the sole legitimate authority, and to assume its responsibilities in preventing the flow of arms to terrorist groups.

The resolution called on the internationally-recognised government to exert more effort to control borders with neighboring countries, a decision over which Qatar voiced reservations. Algeria said items related to lifting the arms embargo and arming the Libyan army fall within the political context of the solution.

The summit urged the Security Council to take full responsibility for dealing with the Syrian crisis, and called for the Arab League Secretary-General to continue his contacts with the UN Secretary-General to reach a common plan of action to come to an agreement on the Syrian crisis, according to the "Geneva I Conference on Syria."

Arabs voiced their absolute backing for the United Arab Emirates sovereignty over its three islands near the Strait of Hormuz, calling on the Iranian government to enter into direct negotiations with the United Arab Emirates or to go to the International Court of Justice to find a peaceful solution to the issue of the islands occupied by Iran since 1971.

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