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Sirte Declaration: Supporting Syria in Restoring the Occupied Golan, Supporting Palestinian Struggle against Israeli Occupation
Writer/Source: Sana (11/10/2010)
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Sirte Declaration, released on Sunday at the conclusion of the 2nd Afro-Arab summit, stressed the support for Syria's right in restoring the occupied Syrian Golan to the line of June 4th, 1967 according to the international legitimacy resolutions.

The Declaration said that Israel's continued occupation of Arab territories is a threat to the international peace and security, expressing deep concern over the unilateral sanctions imposed on Syria by the United States, considering the so-called Syria Accountability Act a violation of the principles of international law, a transgression against the goals and principles of the United Nations, and a dangerous precedent in dealing with independent countries.

The Afro-Arab Declaration stressed the full support for the struggle of the Palestinian people against the Israeli occupation and their right in exercising their national rights, including the right to self-determination and living in peace and stability in an independent Palestine state based on the June 4th 1967 line with Jerusalem as its capital according to the international legitimacy.

The Arab and African leaders refused to acknowledge any situation resulting from the Israeli settlement activity in the occupied Arab lands as it is an illegal procedure that constitutes of breach of the Geneva Convention, a war crime, and a violation of the basis of the peace process.

The Declaration underlined the necessity of full Israeli withdrawal from the occupied Lebanese lands in Kafr Shuba, Shebaa Farms and al-Ghajar in line with the relevant international resolutions, particularly the UN Security Council resolution no. 1701 of 2006.

It expressed support of the sovereignty of Sudan, the unity of its lands and supporting the efforts aimed at achieving peace in the country, rejecting completely the decision of the International Criminal Court against the Sudanese President.

In this context, the Declaration expressed support to the efforts aimed at achieving peace and stability in the country, calling on all Sudanese parties in Darfur to cooperate with these efforts.

It also stressed the importance of respecting the sovereignty and freedom of Iraq, the unity of its lands, not intervening in its internal affairs and the urgent need to reach the national reconciliation and the consensus Iraqi government to achieve security, stability and represent all of the Iraqi people.

The Arab and African leaders called for holding an international conference for studying the crime of terrorism, defining it, differentiating between it and peoples' right to resist occupation, and rejecting connecting terrorism to any nationality or religion.

The Declaration called for a comprehensive reform of the United Nations that meets the aspirations of Arab and African people and enables the organization to deal actively with international and contemporary challenges.

It also called for bolstering the role of th UN General Assembly, reforming the International Security Council and expanding its permanent membership to allow all regions in the world to participate in directing the international order.

Participants called for making the Middle East free of weapons of mass destruction and compelling Israel to joint the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) without delay or preconditions and subjecting all Israel's nuclear facilities to the safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency, voicing support for the Arab initiative for making the Middle East free of weapons of mass destruction.

The Declaration called for a joint concerted Afro-Arab effort to carry out substantial and comprehensive reforms in the UN to fulfill the demands of the African and Arab peoples and enable the UN to enhance the role of the UN General Assembly in dealing effectively with the contemporary international challenges.

It also called for urgent reform of the UN Security Council and expanding permanent membership of the Council.

The Afro-Arab summit approved laying down a long-term comprehensive strategy to the Afro-Arab relations, setting up an effective and practical mechanism for the implementation and following up, establishing an integrated Afro-Arab region marked by progress, prosperity, removing obstacles hindering Afro-Arab cooperation, enhancing coordination and regular consultations between the two regions and intensifying cooperation in political, economic, financial and trade fields in the interests of the two sides.

The Declaration stressed the need for uniting efforts to increase cooperation, integration and coordination in all fields to achieve the hoped-for strategic partnership in a political and economic system that has more solidarity and justice.

It also called for carrying out Afro-Arab work plans, guaranteeing investment between the two areas, opening new markets, establishing a preferential trade zone, dealing with obstacles facing investors from both sides, and expanding cooperation to guarantee investment.

The Declaration asserted the importance of cooperation, developing technologies to confront challenges, developing the chances provided by renewable energy sources in a manner guaranteeing achieving food security and sustainable development, realizing the repercussions of climate change, and committing to efforts for combating climate change.

It concluded by underlining the growing importance of the role of culture as a bridge between the Arab and African peoples and the unique nature of cultural relations between the two areas, stressing the need to preserve cultural identity, spread the most important aspects relevant to the mutual cultural heritage, and boosting scientific and technical cooperation between the two regions.

Participants also agreed on having Kuwait host the next Afro-Arab Summit in 2013.
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