Photo Credit: DS Levi
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, June 20 2017

Arab leaders met Sunday in Tunis to express support for the so-called “two-state solution” and to discuss U.S. President Donald Trump’s declaration formally recognizing the Golan Heights as part of Israeli territory.

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman said at the conference that he “totally rejects” any move that would affect Syria’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, and reiterated Riyadh’s support for the establishment of a Palestinian state with “East Jerusalem” as its capital.

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Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said, “There is no solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict without the liberation of all the occupied Arab lands,” according to Associated Press, as quoted by the Hebrew-language weekly Maariv newspaper.

Jordan’s King Abdullah II ducked the issue of the Golan Heights, but in his remarks said the issue of the “Palestinian cause” must remain the prime objective of the Arab people. No security, no stability or prosperity is possible in the region, he said, without a just and lasting solution to the Palestinian issue that “fulfills the Palestinian national aspiration to establish an independent state along the 1967 lines and whose capital is East Jerusalem.”

The emir of Qatar left the gathering right after the opening ceremony, for unknown reasons; as a result he delivered no remarks.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres joined in the anti-Israel chorus, saying “Any decision on the conflict in Syria must guarantee the territorial integrity of the country, including the ‘occupied’ Golan Heights.” He added that it was “vital” to work for a “two-state solution” in order to resolve the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority – as usual without explaining how that moribund process could possibly succeed after 20 years of repeated failure.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, who was also at the gathering, likewise agreed with Arab leaders on all counts.

At the end of the debate, Arab leaders are expected to make a declaration against the American proclamation on the Golan Heights.

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