Arab League Secretary-General Amr Mousa, stated that all efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East cannot reach a positive outcome without a full Israeli withdrawal from occupied Arab and Palestinian lands. His statements came during a press conference held with the Lebanese Foreign Minister, Ali al-Shamy.
Mousa said that Israel is acting in a way that makes it very difficult to withdraw from the territories it has occupied, and is ongoing with its violations in Jerusalem and the rest of the Palestinian territories.
He added that Israel’s illegal land-grabs, and the ongoing occupation of Arab and Palestinian territories, makes it impossible to advance in the peace process.
The Secretary-General further stated that efforts to achieve peace cannot be achieved without a full withdrawal from Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese territories.
Mousa also called on the Arab countries to present a firm stance in the face of Israel’s illegal measures in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem.
“We reject Israel’s propaganda in which it claims demolishing seven settlements, while at the same time it is constructing and expanding settlements”, he said.
He further stated that, so far, all of the efforts did not lead to any progress, and that Arab leaders will hold a meeting after the end of the 120-day period that should mark the beginning of direct final-status talks.
“The 120-day period is meant to evaluate proximity talks”, Mousa stated, “If there is progress, then that’s great”.
On his side, the Lebanese Foreign Minister, said that since December of last year, Israel has been talking about withdrawing from al-Ghajar Lebanese village, but nothing happened on the ground and Israel is still stalling and trying to avoid the implementation of all related Security Council resolutions, especially resolution number 1701.
Al-Shamy added that Lebanon was not officially informed of any Israeli withdrawal, and that the United States is not involved in any of these efforts.
He said that the Lebanese ambassador in Washington, Antwan Shadid, contacted several U.S officials who told him that they were not informed of any decision of Israeli withdrawal from al-Ghajar village.