Kuwait urges comprehensive settlement to Middle East conflict
KUWAIT/BRUSSELS: Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah partakes in scheduled ministerial meetings at the Arab League headquarters today to re-examine the Palestinian cause namely the question of the holy city of Jerusalem.
Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled will participate in a meeting of the Arab Peace Initiative Committee, membership of which includes the State of Kuwait, and a meeting of the Arab League Ministerial Council, which is a follow-up session to be held as part of the council extraordinary session held on December 9, 2017.
Arab ministers and officials, during the December meeting, discussed ideas and proposed plans for facing repercussions of the United States’ decision to “recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital” and shift the American embassy from Tel to the sacred city. The two meetings will convene in light of the mini Arab ministerial meeting, hosted by Jordan on January 6, 2018, and on basis of the Arab League Council resolution, taken during the December extraordinary session, stipulating that the council would reconvene in a month.
The Arab states’ officials had taken the decision to consider the council meetings as ‘open’ for assessing ‘the situation’ and seek to reach consensus on future steps in the face of Washington’s step, as well as for intensifying efforts to reach a political settlement to resolve the Arab-Israeli strife and establish the independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.
Kuwait’s delegation to the meetings includes the State of Kuwait’s Ambassador to Egypt Mohammad Al-Thuwaikh, Assistant Foreign Minister for the Arab World Ambassador Aziz Al-Daihani, Deputy Assistant Foreign Minister for the Deputy Premier Bureau Affairs Ambassador Saleh Al-Loughani, the State of Kuwait Permanent Delegate at the Arab League Ahmad Al-Bakr and senior officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Arab Peace Initiative is a 10-sentence plan for an end to the Arab-Israeli conflict, endorsed by the Arab League in 2002 at the Beirut Summit and re-endorsed at the 2007 Arab League summit and at the 2017 Arab League summit. The initiative calls for normalizing relations between the Arab states and Israel, in exchange for full withdrawal from the occupied territories (including East Jerusalem) and a “just settlement” to the Palestinian refugee problem based on UN Resolution 194. Israel has rejected the Arab peace plan and Washington’s recent decision on Jerusalem has further complicated efforts for paving the way for a viable settlement to the conflict, the start of which dates back to the 1940s.
Meanwhile, Kuwait called for a just, comprehensive and definitive solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, based on the two-state solution and relevant UNSC resolutions and international references and Arab Peace Initiative.
Speaking at the special session of the international donor group for Palestine in Brussels yesterday, Kuwait’s ambassador to the EU, Belgium, NATO and Luxembourg, Jasem Al-Budaiwi urged the commitment of the international community to the historical, religious and political status of the city of Jerusalem and the need to ensure that it is not compromised by any unilateral actions. Further, he called for the condemnation of Israel’s continued violation of resolution 2334 on its illegal and illegal settlement activities.
Budaiwi urged the international community to support the activities of UNRWA as one of the most important United Nations agencies serving some six million Palestine refugees, to move away from any ‘politicization’ of its activities and to preserve the nature of its humanitarian activities. He stressed that the State of Kuwait has made every effort to support the Palestinian cause, which has always been the highest priority of its foreign policy. Kuwait is committed to providing UNRWA with annual support of $2 million and is contributing to the Agency’s budget deficit and to meet its emergency needs over the past years, the last of which was to provide $5 million to the Agency in the month of December He expressed regret that the work of the technical commissions and international agencies, such as the Committee on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, has not achieved the desired goals because of the lack of political will and willingness of one of the parties to this protracted and protracted conflict.
In other news, Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled met yesterday with visiting GCC Secretary-General Abdul-Latif Al-Zayani. During the meeting, they addressed action programs and plans for the GCC Secretariat’s sectors to put in place resolutions taken during the 38th GCC summit held in Kuwait on December 7, 2017, given that Kuwait holds the current rotating presidency of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Several senior officials of the Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry were present at the meeting. – KUNA