His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah

KUWAIT/NOUAKCHOTT: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and the accompanying delegation will leave Austria today, heading to Nouakchott, Mauritania, to partake in the 27th Arab summit. The Syrian conflict, which erupted in 2011, will be heavily focused upon in the upcoming summit.

With the Syrian regime continuing to use unjustified force against civilians and Russia carpet-bombing and killing many innocent people, Syria's conflict continues to be the most prominent matter that Arab leaders need to address until a resolution is reached.

Situation in Syria

In the Arab summits held in Baghdad, Doha, Kuwait, and Sharm El-Sheikh between 2012 and 2015, Arab leaders called for the end of the situation in Syria through regional and international efforts led by the UN.

The right of the Syrian people to choose their government was also an issue that most Arab leaders raised during the previous summits. They called on the international community to recognize the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces as the sole representative of the people.

The Arab leaders took note of the generous initiatives launched by His Highness the Amir through the various donors' conference for Syrian organized in Kuwait and elsewhere. The upcoming summit in Nouakchott will be yet another chance for the Arab leaders to address this grave matter in hopes that the Syrian people will finally have peace in their country.

Preparatory meeting

The preparatory meeting of Arab foreign ministers began yesterday ahead of the summit. Kuwait's First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah heads the Kuwaiti delegation to the ministerial meeting which will prepare all the paper work needed for the summit, including the final communique.

Arab League Secretary General Ahmad Abul-Gheit indicated in remarks yesterday that among the agenda topics which will be discussed by the foreign ministers will be fighting terrorism, the Syrian crisis, the Palestinian conflict, the situations in Iraq, Yemen, and Libya.

Moreover, he stressed the importance of implementing reforms that support joint Arab cooperation, particularly at this juncture in the history of the region where the threat of terrorism has become palpable.

Regarding the Palestinian problem, he said it was high time that new fundamentals be reached to coax ahead the peace process and the realization of a two-state solution. He warned that the Syrian crisis, with its myriad complications, was in a great part directly responsible for disconcerting regional peace and stability. Further, he underscored the urgent need for speedy political solutions to the turbulent situations in Iraq, Yemen, and Libya.

Joint action

Meanwhile, Mauritania's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Isselkou Ould Ahmed Izid Bih said that the Arab summit would be distinguished with activation of pan-Arab cooperation and dealing with the nation's crises.

Minister Izid Bih, whose country chairs the current summit, said in a statement at the preparatory ministerial meeting that among the most major problems that need to be addressed at the gathering is violence spread "targeting the unguarded minds," in addition to mushrooming sectarianism, arms proliferation and collapse of States' institutions.

"Such a situation warrants that we revise current policies and seek conciliations, cordially, for the sticking issues," he said. He called on Arab states to map out strategies "that address social, cultural and economic dimensions for man's security," urged for boosting cooperation with regional and international organizations and states, namely the African countries.

Palestinian cause remains the top priority for the Arab League, Izid Bih said, affirming that the Arab organization relentlessly seeks to reach a just and viable peace in the region, based on ending Israeli occupation of Palestinian and Arab territories. He expressed hope that the new summit would launch a new phase for inter-Arab action based on solidarity, renouncing differences and realizing national conciliations.

In the meantime, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukry said his country is looking forward to bolstering joint Arab action to face current challenges namely terrorism. He called on the Arab states to boost common action at the political, social and economic levels.

The ministers discussed a 16-topic agenda, including the Palestinian question, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, the Iran-occupied UAE islands, Turkish forces' breach of Iraqi territories, combating terrorism, overhauling the Arab League, joint social and economic action.

Egyptian revolution

In other news, His Highness the Amir yesterday congratulated Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi on the advent of the July 23rd revolution anniversary. His Highness the Deputy Amir and Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah and National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem sent similar cables.

Separately, His Highness the Amir Friday extended condolences for Mahmoud Abbas, President of Palestine and PLO's Executive Committee Chairman, for the passing away of his brother, Omar. His Highness the Crown and His Highness the Prime Minister also sent cables of condolences to Abbas. - KUNA