File Photo: African leaders pose for a group photograph at the opening session of the 33rd African Union (AU) Summit at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, February 9, 2020. AP
The AU Executive Council, which concluded its 39th ordinary session held in Addis Ababa for two days, decided on Friday to postpone taking a final position regarding granting Israel observer status in the union until the AU summit scheduled for February 2022.
In a press statement, the Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the move "would allow for developing an integrated plan of action starting from this moment until the convening of the summit to prevent Israel's accession a success."
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will participate in the summit and will make an extra effort with the leaders of those countries to prevent Israel from being accepted as an observer member in the union, it added.
"More than 24 member states were able to announce officially and in writing their opposition to the decision to accept Israel's accession, including Algeria, South Africa, Nigeria, Namibia, Gambia, and many other countries," the statement said.
"These countries, which back the Palestinian position and support the Palestinian rights, insist on preventing Israel's accession," it added.
Israel announced on July 22 that it had joined the AU as an observer state after being kept out for two decades, according to Israeli media.
Israel previously held observer status at the predecessor Organization of African Unity until 2002, when the organization was dissolved and became the AU.