Arab League to open Iraq office

Arab League foreign ministers are to approve the opening of a representation office in Iraq, days after President Jalal Talabani lambasted Arab countries for their reluctance to send envoys.

    The ministers will agree on a date for the next Arab League summit

    At a meeting in Cairo on Thursday, the 22-member pan-Arab organisation was to discuss regional issues and agree on a date for the next Arab League summit.
      
    According to a draft resolution, the body was to approve the opening of an Arab League representation office in Baghdad.
      
    It will also "condemn terrorist attacks in Iraq which jeopardise peace and security" and the killing of an Egyptian and two Algerian diplomatic envoys to Iraq in July. 

    Security
      
    Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal said ahead of the meeting that Arab League representatives would also discuss stepping up their diplomatic representation in war-torn Iraq.
      
    "There are no obstacles to sending an ambassador to Iraq but it's a security issue," he explained. 
      

    "There are no obstacles to sending an ambassador to Iraq but it's a security issue" 

    Saud al-Faisal,
    Saudi Foreign Minister

    Iraq President Jalal Talabani had voiced his irritation on Monday over the reluctance of several Arab countries to send ambassadors.
      
    The resolution also calls "on relevant Arab countries to cancel or reduce their Iraqi debt in line with the Paris Club decision." 
       
    The Arab foreign ministers were due to release another resolution calling for Israel to "withdraw from all Palestinian lands, including Jerusalem," following its landmark pullout from the Gaza Strip, Egypt's MENA official news agency reported.
      
    The Arab foreign ministers will also discuss "a regional anti-terrorism strategy" in the wake of the deadly bombings that hit the Egyptian Read Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh and London in July, an opening statement said.

    SOURCE: AFP


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