Arab Leaders Hold Emergency Talks On Iran

Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz said on Friday that a lack of a firm stance against the “terrorist practices of the Iranian regime” had led to a recent escalation in the Gulf.

King Salman called an emergency summit of Arab League leaders in Mecca after a spike in tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

The Saudi monarch said his country would always be open to “cooperation and dialogue” towards achieving peace in the Gulf, including for Iran.

Iraqi President Barham Salih said that the security and stability of Iran is in the interest of Muslim and Arab states.

Salih described Iran as a Muslim country and neighbor to Iraq.

“We do not hope that its security is targeted because we share 1,400 kilometers of border and a number of relations,” he said, referring to Iran.

While he said Iraq condemns a recent attack by Iranian-allied Yemeni rebels on a Saudi oil pipeline, he stressed that the region needs stability based on respect of sovereignty and the rejection of violence.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, meanwhile, made an appeal to his fellow Arab leaders to reject a White House plan for the Palestinian-Israel conflict.

Abbas reiterated that the Palestinian leadership is boycotting a meeting next month in Bahrain being organized by the White House.

President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner seeks to rally Arab Gulf states to back economic initiatives for Palestinians at the Bahrain meeting, but Palestinian officials have described the plan as economic blackmail.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE are participating in the conference.

Abbas said that any peace plan must include a Palestinian state along 1967 borders with east Jerusalem as its capital.

He noted that this has been the steadfast position of Arab states, including as recently as last year at an Arab League summit held in Saudi Arabia, which King Salman renamed the Jerusalem Summit.

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