Arabs reject unilateralism

Arab foreign ministers have rejected Israeli plans unilaterally to demarcate its borders, saying this would make the establishment of an independent Palestinian state impossible.

    The Arab ministers agreed to 'reject partial solutions'

    The ministers agreed on Sunday "to reject partial solutions and unilateral Israeli measures including ... the unilateral demarcation of Israel's borders", in a draft resolution agreed at a preparatory meeting for the two-day Arab summit opening on Tuesday.

    "This fulfils Israel's expansionist greed and renders impossible [plans] to establish a sovereign and independent Palestinian state," the draft said.

    Ehud Olmert, the acting prime minister, said on Sunday Israel would set its final borders after internal debate and consultations with the United States but without necessarily asking the opinion of Palestinians.

    "We should decide on our borders in order to separate ourselves from the Palestinians," said Olmert, whose Kadima party is the overwhelming favourite to emerge triumphant in Tuesday's general election.

    Arab ministers called on the UN, the US, the EU and Russia to "stress that any unilateral move should be within the attempts to reach comprehensive and just peace in the Middle East, based on the [2002] Arab peace initiative and the road map".

    The road map calls for an independent Palestinian state beside a secure Israel.

    SOURCE: AFP


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