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Amman to host extraordinary Arab summit over Jerusalem

Ministers to assess progress in pro-Jerusalem push in a month

By JT - Dec 10,2017 - Last updated at Dec 10,2017

Ayman Safadi

AMMAN — Minister of Foreign Affairs Ayman Safadi announced on Saturday that Jordan would host an "extraordinary" Arab summit as the chair of the current Arab summit session.

He did not specify the date, but said Arab League Council will meet again in about a month to discuss political developments in the light of the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported on Sunday. 

Safadi’s remarks came during a press conference at the conclusion of the emergency meeting of Arab foreign ministers, held on Saturday upon Jordan's request. The press meeting was attended by Arab League Secretary General Ahmad Aboul Gheit, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al Maliki and Djibouti's Foreign Minister Mahmoud Ali Youssouf, president of the current session of the Arab League Council at the ministerial level.

Meeting upon Jordan's request, the Arab foreign ministers voiced their rejection of the US decision as illegal and in contradiction with international legitimacy, Safadi told reporters. 

He pointed out that the Arab Peace Initiative Committee, headed by Jordan, will form a delegation from its members to work with the international community to address any negative consequences of the Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. 

They will also highlight the graveness of this decision and its impact on the national, historical and religious status of occupied Jerusalem.

He noted that the meeting’s final statement entailed a number of resolutions that deal with the situation as it is now, and in a month they will meet to assess progress and decide the next steps accordingly.

Safadi underlined the Arab initiative as a reference framework for the negotiations that have been committed to by all the Muslim and Arab countries to preserve the Palestinian rights. 

The Arabs have not abandoned UN Security Council resolutions 242 and 338, whose implementation will remain pursued by Arabs in their quest for peace.  

In his remarks at the emergency meeting in Cairo, Safadi outlined a five-step strategy for Arabs to deal with Trump’s decision, which will be followed by relocating the US embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city.

The five-point plan, which Safadi described as “impactful and programmed” calls for “taking action, in coordination with the international community to rescind the decision and taking steps to prevent other countries from following the steps of Washington. This necessitates forming an Arab delegation to visit influential world capitals to push for the two-state solution to the Mideast conflict”, Safadi said, adding that the entire world should then recognise the emerging independent Palestinian state, within the pre-1967 lines and with East Jerusalem as its capital.   

Amman also urged Arab states to adopt an effective approach to explain to the rest of the world the risks inherent in altering the status quo in Jerusalem or its character.

The meeting’s final communiqué said: “The US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is invalid and constitutes a dangerous breach of international law and UN Security Council resolutions,” the published final communiqué read, as carried by Anadolu news agency. 

“In line with UN Security Council resolutions, foreign ministers of Arab states reject any kind of unilateral steps intended to change the internationally accepted status of Jerusalem,” the ministers of the bloc agreed to say.

 

The move demonstrates that the US has chosen to “waive its status of a sponsor and mediator in the Middle East peace process”, it added.

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