Jul 27,2016 – JORDAN TIMES EDITORIAL
The final communiqué of the 27th Arab Summit is disappointing to say the least.
This disappointment comes as no surprise, since most of the results of previous Arab summits have been the same.
The decisions of the attending Arab leaders or their representatives paid lip service to the many complex Arab conflicts and issues.
The communiqué reiterated the now all too familiar clichés on the Palestinian conflict by reaffirming the centrality of the issue and welcoming the French initiative aimed at convening a peace conference. It also expressed Arab support for the Palestinians.
However, no new concrete initiatives emerged from the one-day meeting to effectively serve the Palestinian cause.
The stance of the summit was even worse when it came to Syria.
On this nearly six-year old bloody conflict that has caused daily bloodshed, the statement merely expressed the convening Arab countries’ hope for a peaceful and political resolution of the crisis in order to preserve and protect the territorial integrity of the country, and ensure its independence and the dignity of its people.
Again, no concrete action — only hopes.
The statements on Libya, Iraq, Sudan and Somalia were the same in tone and lack of substance.
Of course, there were references in passing to human rights, the role of women, democracy and the fight against extremism.
In his speech at the summit, delivered by Prime Minister Hani Mulki, His Majesty King Abdullah called for reforming the Arab League to play a more prominent role in pushing for joint Arab action — which is needed now more than ever.
Action must indeed be taken to overhaul the league and other pan-Arab institutions to make them active players on the political, cultural and economic scenes.
Otherwise, these annual summits will continue to produce the same well-worn statements calling for peace and joint action, but offering no actual measures to be taken, towards that end.