Sunday 18th of August 2019

Arab League Says Jewish Settlements in Palestinian Lands "Illegal"


--The Arab League Council, meeting at the Permanent representatives' level Tuesday, said Jewish settlements in occupied Palestinian territories were "illegal" and in violation of the international law, UN resolutions and international agreements.

The council, at the end of its two-day meeting chaired by Syria, said just and comprehensive peace was a strategic option for Arab countries.

It asserted that the Arab peace initiative, which was approved by Arab leaders in their summit meeting in Beirut, Lebanon, in 2002, would not remain on the table for a long time.

The permanent representatives approved a host of draft resolutions and referred them to the foreign ministers who will meet here today.

They acknowledged Egypt's role in inter-Palestinian conciliation, and called for the respect of legitimacy of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas as well as his efforts to bring about success to the conciliation.

Just and comprehensive peace will not be achieved but through the full Israeli withdrawal from the occupied Palestinian and Arab territories, reaching an agreement on the Palestinian refugees' issue and establishing an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.

The council called on all parties, namely the US, and international organizations to live up to their responsibilities by forcing Israel to halt its settlements' expansion policy.

One of the draft resolutions called for holding an Arab conference to show solidarity with the steadfastness of the city of Al-Quds as part of celebrations that mark Al-Quds as the Arab cultural capital for 2009.

It urged Arab countries, Arab and Islamic organizations to continue their support for people of Jerusalem and Palestinian institutions in the holy city.

It condemned the Israeli racist policies which stripped thousands of Palestinians living in Jerusalem from their IDs, calling on international organizations to press Israel to halt its policies.

The draft resolution refused Israel's definition of itself as a state of a Jewish character, which aims at scrapping the right of return of Palestinian refugees and compensations.

The Arab League council, meanwhile, condemned the August 19 terrorist bombings in Baghdad which killed and wounded scores of innocent civilians.

It welcomed the serious steps of the Iraqi government to enforce its security plan to restore order, which has already reduced violence nationwide.

The draft resolution backed the Iraqi government's measures to collect illegal arms, resettle displaced Iraqis and achieve national conciliation.

The draft resolution said the Arab League supported the Iraqi government's in its security responsibilities.

It underlined importance of respecting unity and sovereignty of Iraq as well as its Arabic and Islamic identities.

On the Syrian Golan Heights, the Arab League Council reiterated support for Damascus' calls for full liberation of the strategic plateau to the border lines of June 4, 1967.

The permanent representatives, on the other hand, praised the patriotic role of the Lebanese army in southern Lebanon.

They backed the Lebanese government's endeavors to maintaining political and economic stability and security vis-a-vis terrorism. They asserted that Lebanon has the right to defend its territories against violations including the smuggling of arms.

The council called on importance of the Israeli withdrawal from the Lebanese Shebaa Farms, Kfar Shuba hills and the village of Al-Ghajar.

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