PA Urges Arab League to Revoke Mauritania’s Membership
The Palestinian Authority urged Arab countries on Wednesday to revoke Mauritania's membership in the Arab League for not complying with the body's recommendation to suspend political contacts with Israel.
Palestinian Minister of Information Yasser Abed Rabbo said a visit this week to Israel by Mauritania's foreign minister violated a recent Arab League "decision" to suspend contacts with Israel until it stopped using military force against a Palestinian revolt.
"If Mauritania is not ready to comply with the resolutions of the Arab League to suspend diplomatic ties (with Israel), this shows that Mauritania should not be a member in the Arab League," Abed Rabbo said.
Abdi met Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres in Jerusalem on Wednesday on the second day of a two-day visit to Israel.
"We are angry to have the foreign minister of Mauritania pay this visit," Abed Rabbo told a news conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah.
Abdi declined to respond to a reporter's question on Abed Rabbo's remarks.
AFP quoted opposition figures in Mauritania as saying that Abdi's visit "legitimizes Israel's barbaric acts against the Palestinian people."
The foreign minister's visit also triggered criticism by the Popular Committee for Anti-Normalization with Israel, which described Abdi's visit to the Jewish state as a "betrayal to the Arab and Muslim cause" and to the resolutions adopted by the Arab organizations
In 1999, Mauritania became the third Arab League country after Egypt and Jordan to sign a peace treaty with Israel.
Arab foreign ministers recommended on Saturday that political contacts with Israel be suspended until Israel withdraws its forces to the positions they were in before the Palestinian revolt started eight months ago.
At least 444 Palestinians, 87 Israelis and 13 Israeli Arabs have been killed since the Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation erupted in late September after peace talks stalled.
Oman, Qatar, Morocco and other Arab countries which established low level ties with Israel after a 1993 interim peace deal was signed, froze relations after the revolt erupted.
Egypt recalled its ambassador from Tel Aviv in November and Jordan had delayed sending its ambassador to Tel Aviv – Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)