Khatami Criticizes Arabs for ‘Procrastinating’ at Summit
Iranian President Mohammed Khatami criticized Arab leaders on Sunday for "procrastinating" over support for the Palestinians at their Cairo summit, state radio reported.
"Arab leaders have been procrastinating, and did not cooperate with the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) to support Palestine and resolve this problem," he said in a meeting with visiting OIC chief Ezzedin Laraki.
Tehran, which holds the 56-nation group's rotating presidency, has been pushing for an emergency meeting of OIC foreign ministers to address the Middle East crisis, insisting it was an Islamic responsibility not just an Arab issue.
The secretary general, meanwhile, said the OIC was working on the question of convening an emergency meeting of foreign ministers, a step, which the group has not taken since 1994.
Iran's state IRNA news agency had cited Laraki as saying Saturday the OIC was ready to go ahead with the special meeting ahead of their scheduled ministerial session on November 10-11 in Doha on the eve of the organization’s next summit.
Khatami also said the Palestinian uprising against Israel was "the cry of those who are claiming their fundamental rights, which sadly have been crushed by the most violent methods."
The response of some Arab leaders to the violence, which since September 28 has left more than 130 people dead, a vast majority of them Palestinians, was "insufficient," he said.
Arab leaders at the end of their two-day summit backed the Palestinian uprising and established funds for the victims of clashes with Israeli forces and to ease their economic dependence on Israel.
But they stopped short of scrapping Arab ties with the Jewish state – TEHRAN (AFP)
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