Mubarak holds meetings with Saudi crown prince, Jordan king on Arab summit rescheduling
Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak and Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah met in the Egyptian seaside resort of Sharm el-Sheikh Wednesday as Arab leaders struggled to resolve differences and reschedule the Arab summit that collapsed in Tunisia earlier this week.
The Saudi Crown Prince was accompanied to Egypt by a high-level delegation that included Prince Nawaf bin Abdulaziz, the Chief of the General Intelligence, Prince Saud Al-Faisal, the Foreign Minister, a number of princes, cabinet ministers and senior officials, according to SPA news agency.
A visit by Jordan's King Abdullah II also was held and one by Syrian President Bashar Assad hasn't been ruled out. Egypt's Al Ahram daily reported that Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad would pay a visit to Egypt in the upcoming few days for consultations with Mubarak.
The Jordanian monarch was also accompanied by an official delegation that included Prime Minister Faisal Al Fayez, the King's Advisor for Security Affairs, Director of the Intelligence Department and Reporter of the State Security Council, General Saad Kheir, Minister of the Hashemite Royal Court, Sameer Rifai and Foreign Minister, Dr. Marwan Muasher, according to Petra news agency.
Meanwhile, other Arab leaders were reportedly consulting by telephone.
A high-ranking US delegation expected in Sharm el-Sheikh Wednesday also was to discuss prospects for a summit at which Washington calls for more "democracy" in the Arab world were likely to be discussed.
Would-be-host Tunisia canceled a planned Arab League annual summit Saturday, less than 48 hours before it was to begin, saying divisions on the major issues could not be resolved.
The summit was to address political reform in Arab states, reforming the Arab League and how to proceed toward Israeli-Palestinian peace.
Jordan, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen have welcomed Mubarak's offer to hold the summit in Egypt. But Tunisian Foreign Minister Habib Ben Yahya said President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali still wants to hold the summit, and Moussa, the Arab League secretary-general, said he would visit Tunisia on Friday to discuss "the time, place and substance" of any upcoming summit.
For his part, Egypt's Minister of Information Safwat Al-Sherif denied reports that Cairo has fixed April 16th as a date for convening the Arab Summit, adding that President Mubarak is keen to have consultations with his Arab brothers on fixing a date for the Arab foreign ministers meeting which will discuss all issues raised at the present time. Then, he said, a date would be fixed for the Arab Summit. Al-Ahram newspaper reported that the summit was expected to be held early in May in Egypt at the Arab League headquarters. (Albawaba.com)
© 2004 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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