Who is attending the Arab summit?

Who is attending the Arab summit?
As Arab leaders gather in Egypt for a critical summit, Al-Araby el-Jadeed looks at the summit's agenda, and who is attending the gathering in Sharm el-Sheikh.
4 min read
28 March, 2015
The summit's slogan is "70 years of joint Arab action" [Anadolu]
The events in Yemen are at the top of the agenda of the Arab Summit commencing today in Egypt's resort city of Sharm al-Sheikh, with unprecedented representation and participation of Arab leaders.

This year, the Summit is chaired by Egypt under the slogan "70 years of joint Arab action", with the participation of 14 presidents, one King and one Prince.

However, Syria's seat will remain vacant as the Syrian regime's participation in Arab League meetings had been suspended and the Syrian Coalition, which the Arab League had already recognised as a "representative of the Syrian people", was not invited.

Among the participants are the Presidents of Egypt, Palestine, Sudan, Tunisia, Iraq, Mauritania, Djibouti, Somalia and Yemen, as well as the Kings and Princes of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, Kuwait and Qatar, while the Comoros is represented by its Vice President.

As for Oman, Asaad bin Tariq Al Said is attending on behalf of Sultan Qaboos bin Said.

The United Arab Emirates is represented by Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammad al-Sharqi, ruler of the Emirate of Fujairah, and Algeria is represented by Parliament Speaker Abdul Qadir bin Saleh.

Prime Minister Tammam Salam is representing Lebanon, and Tobruk Parliament Speaker Aqila Saleh is representing Libya, while Morocco is represented by Foreign Minister Salahuddin Mizwar.

Yemen tops the agenda folllowed by Palestine and Syria, among other issues.
The summit's agenda lists some 11 items. The first item relates to the report by the summit's presidency on the activity of the body following up on the implementation of decisions, obligations and other matters, as well as the report by the Arab League Secretary General on the joint Arab action.

The second item deals with the Palestinian question and the Arab-Israeli conflict with their latest political developments, as well as activating the Arab Peace Initiative and supporting Palestine's budget and the perseverance of the Palestinian people. In addition, the item will deal with the issues of the occupied Arab Syrian Golan and solidarity and support for Lebanon, while the third item includes developing the Arab League and amending its charter, as well as the amended Statute of the Arab Peace and Security Council.

The fourth item is related to the serious developments in Syria, Libya and Yemen, and the fifth item tackles supporting the Federal Republic of Somalia, while the sixth item focuses on Iran's occupation of the UAE's three islands of the Greater and Lesser Tunb and Abu Musa in the Arab Gulf.

The seventh item deals with maintain Arab national security and fighting extremist terrorist groups.

Item eight focuses on the Economic and Social Council's draft resolutions on the ministerial level, and the ninth item deals with the Sharm al-Sheikh Summit Declaration, while the tenth item determines the location of the Arab League's 27th regular session. Finally, the eleventh item includes thanking the Arab Republic of Egypt for hosting the Arab Summit, as well as other matters.

A joint Arab military force

In their closing meeting last night in Sharm al-Sheikh, Arab Foreign Ministers adopted a resolution to create an Arab military force, with optional participation. The resolution was submitted to Arab leaders for approval. The joint Arab force they decided to create "still needs some time", according to Arab League Secretary General Nabil al-Araby.

According to the draft resolution, the joint Arab force will focus on "rapid intervention in any Arab state whose national security and sovereignty are threatened or faces the threat of terrorism, at the request of the concerned state." In addition, the draft resolution proposed by Egypt assigned the Arab League Secretary General to coordinate with the summit's presidency and invite a high-level team, supervised by Arab chiefs of staff, to meet within a month of issuing the resolution and discuss all aspects of the subject.

This is to be followed by proposing operational procedures and mechanisms of action, as well as the required budget for the formation of the joint Arab military force. The team should present the outcomes of its work for approval within three months of the Joint Arab Defence Council's meeting.

Qatar's Prince Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani lead his country's delegation. This will be the first high level visit to Egypt by a Qatari official in a long time.

This is an edited translation from our Arabic edition.