Tag Archives: Arab

Arab ministers to discuss financial support for Palestinian Authority -agency

Arab ministers to discuss financial support for Palestinian Authority -agencyArab finance ministers will hold an emergency meeting in Cairo on Sunday to discuss helping the Palestinian Authority cope with a deepening cash crunch amid a persistent dispute with Israel over payments to families of jailed and deceased militants. The meeting comes ahead of a U.S.-led economic conference in Bahrain expected to call for a $ 50 billion global investment fund for the Palestinians, Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon which the Palestinian Authority is boycotting. The Palestinian Authority sees the economic conference as an attempt to circumvent its demands for the creation of a Palestinian state in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip with East Jerusalem as its capital.



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To vote or not to vote? The question facing Arab Israelis

To vote or not to vote? The question facing Arab IsraelisIn the days ahead of Israel’s April 9 elections, activists in the country’s north were not trying to convince some residents who to vote for — but just to vote. Israel’s Arab citizens, who account for some 17.5 percent of the population, have been engaged in a debate over whether to boycott the upcoming elections. There have long been boycott calls by Israeli Arabs, but the debate has taken on renewed relevance.



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Arab leaders condemn US Golan decision at summit

Arab leaders condemn US Golan decision at summitArab leaders slammed the US decision to recognise the Golan Heights as Israeli territory at a summit in Tunis on Sunday, but struggled for further unity as Qatar’s emir left the meeting early. In a final declaration the Arab League summit said it “affirmed that the Golan is occupied Syrian territory according to international law, the decisions of the United Nations and the Security Council”. “It is true that America is the strongest military force in the world, but its decision is absolutely worthless,” League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit told a closing news conference.



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Arab leaders to seek U.N. Security Council resolution on Golan

Arab leaders to seek U.N. Security Council resolution on GolanArab leaders, long divided by regional rivalries, also ended their annual summit in Tunisia calling for cooperation with non-Arab Iran based on non-interference in each others’ affairs. Arab leaders who have been grappling with a bitter Gulf Arab dispute, splits over Iran’s regional influence, the war in Yemen and unrest in Algeria and Sudan sought common ground after Washington recognized Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan. “We, the leaders of the Arab countries gathered in Tunisia … express our rejection and condemnation of the United States decision to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan,” Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit said.



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Tunisia says it will coordinate Arab response to U.S. move on Golan

Tunisia says it will coordinate Arab response to U.S. move on GolanTunisia will coordinate with fellow Arab countries to contain any fallout from the U.S. decision to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, Foreign Minister Khemaies Jhinaoui said on Friday. “We will work with fellow Arab countries and the international community to contain the expected repercussions of this decision in the various regional and international forums,” Jhinaoui told the meeting in Tunis.



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Israel's top court disqualifies far-rightist, approves Arab party for ballot

Israel's top court disqualifies far-rightist, approves Arab party for ballotThe Supreme Court rulings were widely expected and unlikely to shake Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s efforts to craft a rightist alliance that might secure him a record fifth term. The court found in favor of appellants who argued that Michael Ben-Ari of the Jewish Power party had displayed anti-Arab racism. Other members of Jewish Power, a small faction that is part of an ultra-nationalist list which last month forged an election alliance with Netanyahu’s Likud party, remain eligible to run.



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U.S. meeting on Middle East brings together Israel, Gulf Arab states

U.S. meeting on Middle East brings together Israel, Gulf Arab statesBy Lesley Wroughton and Justyna Pawlak WARSAW (Reuters) – A U.S.-sponsored Middle East conference aimed at building a coalition against what Washington sees as the threat posed by Iran also produced signs of a warming of ties between Israel and some Arab countries on Wednesday. Foreign ministers and other officials from more than 60 countries were gathering for the conference in Warsaw, which was starting on Wednesday evening and whose agenda included Iran, conflicts in Syria, Yemen and Israeli-Palestinian peace. …



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Syria opposition urges Arab states not to mend ties with Assad

Syria opposition urges Arab states not to mend ties with AssadSyria’s opposition chief on Sunday urged Arab leaders not to rebuild relations with President Bashar al-Assad’s government, voicing frustration amid apparent efforts to bring the Damascus regime back into the Arab fold. After years of frosty ties, the United Arab Emirates last month reopened its embassy in the Syrian capital, and fellow Gulf state Bahrain has followed suit. “We hope that our brothers, the leaders of Arab nations, will not abandon the Syrian people,” he added, urging them to reconsider their decisions.



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UAE re-opens embassy in Syria as Arab leaders begin to welcome Assad back from the cold

UAE re-opens embassy in Syria as Arab leaders begin to welcome Assad back from the coldThe United Arab Emirates (UAE) has re-opened its embassy in Syria, taking a major public step towards welcoming Bashar al-Assad back into the fold of Arab leaders after years of estrangement.   Syria was suspended from the Arab League shortly after the Syrian war broke out in 2011 and most Arab states closed their embassies in Damascus in protest at Assad’s violent crackdown against the opposition.  However, as it has becoming increasingly clear that Assad is likely to stay in power and prevail over downtrodden rebel forces, Syria’s Arab neighbours have begun moving to restore diplomatic ties with the former pariah.   The re-opening of the UAE’s embassy in Damascus is the most significant public step so far towards Assad’s rehabilitation in the Arab world. The move is likely to have been coordinated with Saudi Arabia, the UAE’s more powerful neighbour and close ally.  Syria state media reported that Bahrain may re-open its own embassy in Damascus next week.  One complicating factor is the role of Iran, which has strongly supported the Syrian regime throughout the seven-year war but is considered a major enemy by Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Arab allies. Pictures circulating on social media purportedly showing the (defunct) UAE Embassy in Damascus being renovated ahead of a potential resumption of diplomatic ties between the two countries #Syria#UAEpic.twitter.com/5cdwC9nwx6— Michael A. Horowitz (@michaelh992) December 26, 2018 In a statement, the UAE presented the embassy re-opening as a part of an effort to bring Syria back into the orbit of its fellow Arab states as opposed to its Persian Iranian allies.   The UAE said said it was keen to “restore relations between the two brotherly countries to their normal course” and wanted to enhance “the Arab role” in supporting Syria’s independence and sovereignty.  “This move will also prevent the dangers of regional interference in Syrian affairs,” the UAE foreign ministry said, in a veiled reference to Iran’s role in Syria.   The UAE helped finance some anti-Assad rebels in the early stages of the the war but played a smaller role than Qatar, Saudi Arabia or Turkey. Much of the Gulf funding for rebel groups has now dried up.  Jalel Harchaoui, a lecturer in geopolitics at Versailles university, said both the UAE and Egypt had grown sceptical about overthrowing Assad because they saw him as a bulwark against their shared Islamist enemies. “As Assad’s survival in Damascus is now an indisputable fact of life, and as the West’s 2012 bet appears as a miserable failure, the ideological stance of the UAE and Egypt is being largely vindicated. Both states will now lead the campaign consisting in having the rest of the Arab world embrace that reality,” he said.  Omar Bashir, the president of Sudan, this month became the first Arab leader to travel to Damascus since 2011. His visit was hailed by regime media as sign that Syria was being welcomed back in from the cold.  There also appears to be increasing momentum for Syria to be re-admitted into the Arab League. Ahmed Aboul Gheit, the Egyptian who serves as the League’s secretary general, said earlier this year that Syria’s suspension had been hasty. The next meeting of the Arab League will take place in Tunisia in March. Thursday also saw the first commercial flight from Damascus to Tunisia since 2011. "This trip is the reopening of tourism links between Syria and Tunisia," said Moataz Tarbin, the head of the tourism firm that organised the flight. Syrian state media said earlier this week that Major General Ali Mamlouk, one of Assad’s top security officials, had visited Cairo to discuss terrorism issues with his Egyptian counterparts.  The UAE’s charge d’affaires at the embassy resumed work on Thursday as the UAE’s red, black, and green flag was hoisted for the first time in seven years. Syria regime media showed last-minute construction work to restore the UAE’s state seal on the embassy’s outer wall.  “The UAE expressed its wish that peace, security and stability would prevail throughout Syria,” the foreign ministry said. 



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Sudan's president is first Arab leader to visit Syria since crisis

Sudan's president is first Arab leader to visit Syria since crisisSudanese President Omar al-Bashir arrived in the Syrian capital Damascus on Sunday, the first such visit by an Arab leader since the start of the Syrian conflict, Syrian state media said. President Bashar al Assad welcomed him at the airport, official photos showed. Many Arab countries have shunned Assad since the conflict that began early in 2011 after protests calling for his downfall swept Syria.



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