The Algerian Foreign Minister M. Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Saturday (November 24th) urged members of the?
GV Delegates in conference hall (2 shots)
SCU Arab Ministers at desks (11 shots)
LV Emblem on wall
SCU General Secretary Riad speaks in Arabic
DCU Delegates applaud
LV ZOOM Bouteflika speaks
SCU Delegates with head phones listening
SCU Mr. Mouknass speaking followed by applause
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Background: The Algerian Foreign Minister M. Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Saturday (November 24th) urged members of the Arab League to forget about a peaceful solution and to continue the fight against Israel. He was speaking at a brief public session before Arab Foreign Ministers started a private preparatory meeting for the Arab summit which opens on Monday.
The main aim of the conference is to organise Arab support for Egypt and Syria, who sought the summit, when they enter negotiations for a permanent peace settlement with Israel. The negotiations are provisionally planned for mid-December, at the United Nations in Geneva.
Speeches by Mr. Bouteflika, Egyptian Foreign Minister Mr. Ismail Fahmy and Syrian Foreign Minister Mr. Abdel Halim Khaddam all made it clear that the Arab nations should be prepared to continue fighting. Mr. Fahmy said that peace would only be possible when Israel had been evicted from occupied lands and the rights of the Palestinians had been restored.
The Foreign Ministers were working in private over the weekend to draw up a list of proposals on the further use of oil supplies as a political lever, and on a common Arab fund for buying arms.
Just before the Ministers started their debate, Mauritania was elected as the nineteenth member of the Arab League. The Mauritanian Foreign Minister Mr. Hamdi ould Mouknass, said that Mauritania would do everything to help the success of the summit.
Despite the militant tone, Arab unity is incomplete. Libya and Iraq have declined to attend because they do not agree with the recent ceasefire with Israel. King Hussein of Jordan is not attending because of his long-standing rift with the leader of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), Mr. Yasser Arafat, who has been given head of state status.
SYNOPSIS: Arab Foreign Ministers gathered briefly in Algiers on Saturday before going into a long secret session. They prepared some proposals for the summit meeting of Arab leaders which would open on Monday. Among the proposals were the continued use of Arab oil as a political lever and the setting up of a joint Arab arms-buying fund. The main aim of the summit conference is to organise Arab backing for Egypt and Syria, when they enter negotiations for a permanent peace settlement with Israel. The negotiations are provisionally planned for mid-December in Geneva. Although the declared aim is to secure peace in the Middle East, all the speeches expressed the need to keep on fighting.
Mahmoud Riad, the Secretary General of the Arab League, said the Arab position was a just one. The militant tone of the conference was firmly set in a published speech by his compatriot, the Egyptian Foreign Minister, Mr. Ismael Fahmy. Mr. Fahmy said that Arab countries should be ready to fight again and that peace was only feasible if Israel agreed to give back its lands to the Palestinians
The militant tone was maintained in a speech by the Algerian Foreign Minister, M. Abdelaziz Bouteflika. He said he did not think a real solution was in sight and he urged the Arab States to reorganise their forces and seek support from abroad. Mr. Bouteflika mentioned the growing support for the Arab cause among African and non-aligned nations. He assured Egypt that Algeria would stand by until final victory.
Shortly before the ministers started their debate, Mauritania was elected as the nineteenth member of the Arab League. Mauritanian Foreign Minister, Mr. Hamdi Ould Mouknass, said his country would do everything possible to help the summit. But Iraq and Lebanon are not attending because they don't agree with the recent ceasefire with Israel.