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Cablegate: Arab League Briefs Diplomats On July 15 Foreign

VZCZCXYZ0015
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHEG #4482 1991503
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 181503Z JUL 06
FM AMEMBASSY CAIRO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0041
INFO RUEHEE/ARAB LEAGUE COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS CAIRO 004482

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL AL EG
SUBJECT: ARAB LEAGUE BRIEFS DIPLOMATS ON JULY 15 FOREIGN
MINISTERS' MEETING

REF: RIYADH 5601

1. (U) Arab League Chief of Staff Hisham Youssef briefed
diplomats July 18 on the three resolutions approved by the
Arab League foreign ministers on July 15. He also gave some
of the atmospherics of the meeting. According to Youssef,
the foreign ministers agreed that the Israelis appeared to be
allowed to take any action on the grounds of self defense;
that the use of force by Israeli was accepted by the
international community, if not approved; that the UN
Security Council had failed in its role, and that the peace
process had been "handed over" to Israel to do with as it
pleases.

2. (U) Youssef described the two strains of thought that
emerged from the ministerial. The first was that of the
Saudis (reftel), Jordan and Egypt. The second strain, he
said, showed "greater understanding" of why Hamas and
Hezbollah had acted as they had. Youssef observed that the
ministers believed the region has been waiting for a long
time for movement on the peace process and that these actions
were to be expected. Ministers agreed, he said, that the
peace process was seen as a failure, and the international
community must expect more extremism, more violence and more
acts of terrorism as a result of the frustration that this
provoked. The ministers agreed that it was time to refer to
issue to the UN Security Council. This did not, Youssef
said, imply that they wanted a another Security Council
resolution in the next few days, but rather were looking for
serious discussion in the longer term, perhaps in September.

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Arab League Summit
-------------------------
3. (U) In the afternoon of July 18, Arab League perm reps
met to discuss the possibility of a summit. At the end of
the meeting, it was announced that eight members, Algeria,
Yemen, Sudan, Qatar, the Palestinian Authority, Lebanon,
Djibouti and Egypt, supported a summit. Yemen suggested that
one be held July 25. ( Note: Support from a two-thirds
majority, or 15 countries, is required to call a summit under
AL rules.) During his morning briefing, Youssef said that
the decision to call a summit would hinge on how AL members
view their request to the UNSC to take up the peace process
issue. If, he told the diplomats, they see resistance
building to this approach over the next 24-72 hours, they
will probably call for a summit. If it looks like the UN
will deal with the issue in the next few weeks, they may hold
off.
JONES

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