(...) The Arab Foreign Ministers unanimously
announced their categorical rejection of any
threat of attack against Iraq and called upon Baghdad to pursue
its dialogue with the
Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa said that attacking
Iraq will lead to
severe consequences in the Middle East, but added that the Arabs
want Iraq to
readmit UN inspectors to avoid the dangers of the current crisis.
''We will continue to work to avoid a military confrontation...
because we believe that it
will open the gates of hell in the Middle East which is already
angry and frustrated at
Israel's actions against the Palestinians during their nearly
two-year conflict,'' Moussa
told a news conference after the two-day meeting of the Arab
Foreign Ministers which
was held in the Arab League Headquarters in Cairo.
He said Arab countries instead backed the return of UN arms inspectors
to Iraq as
part of a deal between Baghdad and the United Nations, and urged
Iraq to allow UN
weapons inspections to resume in a bid to head off the US attack,
but he warned, "No
Arab country will accept any strike on any other Arab country.''
Moussa said that discussions among Foreign Ministers confirmed
that all Arab
countries are opposed to taking any part in the US strike on
Iraq regardless OF any
pressure that might be exerted on them.
The Secretary General said that there are major challenges facing
the Arab region
whether in Palestine, Iraq and Sudan, noted that they affect
the heart of the Arab
National Security and the essence of the social and political
Moussa stressed on the presence of clear indications over an
Arab disability to
confront such challenges, reflected in ethnic violations against
Arabs accusing them of
anti-Semitism, the continuous Israeli aggression against the
Palestinian people and
the threats of a possible strike on Iraq.
In their final communiqué, the 22 Arab states expressed
their ''deliberate rejection of
any threat of aggression against some Arab countries and Iraq
in particular.'' They
also ''stressed that these threats and any threat posed against
the security and
integrity of any Arab country will be considered as a threat
against the Arab national
The Arab states called for lifting 12 years of UN sanctions imposed
on Iraq and
ensuring Iraq remains one country, and ending the sufferings
of the Iraqi people in a
way that insure stability and security in the region.
They also called for respecting Iraq's independence, sovereignty,
integrity, and stopping all acts of interference in its internal
The Arab League Council welcomed in its resolution Iraq's initiatives
dialogue with the United Nations and urged for continuing such
dialogue to reach a
comprehensive settlement between them that guarantees an implementation
security council resolutions.
It asked the Arab League Secretary General to hold contacts with
the Security Council
and the UN Secretary General and urge them to fulfil their legal
according to the United Nations Charter and avert any attack.