Libya won't attend Arab summit, says Arabs ”not serious”
Libya won't attend the upcoming Arab summit in Riyadh, the Libyan foreign minister said Sunday, adding that the Arab world "is not serious" and that "joint Arab action is dysfunctional."
"Arab joint action is marred by disorder," Libyan Foreign Minister Abdel-Rahman Shalqam said at Arab League headquarters in Cairo Sunday. "Libya is insisting on a real Arab mechanism - not policies of axes, groups and unilateral changes to decisions," Shalqam said, according to the AP.
Arab foreign ministers convened Sunday to prepare the agenda for the summit, which will be held March 28-29 in Saudi Arabia.
Late Saturday, Shalqam declared that his country's "seat at the summit will be vacant." Libya will not attend due to "procedural errors," he conveyed. Shalqam dismissed speculations that the shift of summit venue from the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh to Saudi Arabia had any relation to Tripoli's decision.
"Our relations with Saudi are brotherly and good," Shalqam told reporters Sunday. "But the Arab world is not serious," he said criticizing the way Arab countries manage their political affairs. "Iran has become the enemy (of Arab countries) not Israel. What nonsense this is," Shalqam noted.
Hesham Youssef, an aide to the Arab League secretary-general, said, "We haven't been officially informed about this. I heard remarks by the Libyan foreign minister and I hope this is not a final decision, we still have time to discuss the issue and we hope that Libya will reconsider it."