Cairo, 3 Jumadil Akhir 1435/3 April 2014 (MINA) – An emergency meeting of Arab foreign ministers will be held next week to address the latest developments in the Palestinian issue in light of Israel’s refusal to release a fourth batch of Palestinian prisoners, the Secretary General of the Arab League Nabil Al-Arabi announced yesterday.
In a press conference held at the Arab League’s General Secretariat in Cairo Al-Arabi said the League has decided to hold a meeting in Cairo next Wednesday, April 9, after deliberations with Arab states.
The meeting is to be attended by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Middle East Monitor (MEMO) quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.
According to Al-Arabi, Abbas will speak “frankly” with Arab foreign ministers about all the options available for the Palestinians for dealing with the current situation with regards to the future of negotiations and whether they will be extended and the Palestinians’ insistence on exercising their right to sign international treaties.
Al-Arabi explained that when Abbas requested to join 15 international treaties, he was exercising an inherent right that the Palestinian state has gained after being accepted in the UN as a non-member state in November 2012, a development that proved that Palestine is a state under occupation and not a group of disputed territories.
He added that he believes that by refusing to release the fourth batch of prisoners, Israel is seeking to buy time and postpone negotiations. He described this step as an aggressive act against Palestine.
Abbas has had two phone conversations with Al-Arabi in which he addressed the latest developments and the options available for the Palestinians and Arabs to deal with the current situation.
Al-Arabi stressed that US Secretary of State John Kerry is exerting valued efforts to support the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations that started on July 29 and are set to end on April 29.
He noted that the US is the only party capable of pressuring Israel, whose government does not want peace with the Palestinian leadership.
Palestine’s ambassador and permanent representative at the Arab League Barakat Al-Farra told the WAFA news agency that the objective of the ministerial meeting is to update Arab foreign ministers on the latest developments regarding the negotiations with the Israelis and the steps that could be taken in the next stage. (T/P02/E01)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)