Saudi king slams Iranian meddling in Arab states

Saudi king slams Iranian meddling in Arab states

"We demand an independent worldwide investigation to guarantee the application of global law against anyone proven to have used chemical weapons", said a final statement issued by the Arab League after the summit.

There was little mention of Syria, whose president Bashar al Assad was not invited to the summit.

Discussions during the summit will shed light on the crisis in Syria following a tripartite strike by the US, France and the United Kingdom on several military and research targets in Syria.

The Arab leaders participating in the summit have affirmed centrality of the Palestinian issue and importance of the status of eastern Jerusalem as the capital of the future state of Palestine.

Meanwhile, Iran has led proxy battles in several Arab countries, including Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.

In a joint declaration issued on conclusion of a summit in Saudi city of Dharan, the Arab leaders stressed the importance of a comprehensive and lasting peace in the Middle East as a strategic Arab option embodied in the Arab Peace Initiative, adopted by all Arab countries at Beirut Summit in 2002.

Saudi Arabia's King Salman on Sunday opened an Arab League summit by criticising US President Donald Trump's decision to transfer the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

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The communique called for more worldwide sanctions on Iran and urged it to withdraw "its militias" from Syria and Yemen.

He told Arab leaders that Iran was to blame for instability and meddling in the region.

The four countries severed diplomatic and transport ties with Doha in June 2017, accusing it of supporting terrorism. Doha denies the charges.

The Arab League was founded in 1945 to protect newly-won independence throughout the region.

In a statement on Sunday, Bahram Qassemi reiterated Iran's principled policy of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries.

The report also said that the president of the 28th Arab summit, HM King Abdullah II, reaffirmed that a comprehensive and just peace in the region would only come about through the establishment of an independent and sovereign Palestinian state, as partial formulas in addressing the region's crises or bypassing the Palestinian issue will never bring the stability aspired-for by Arabs. Trump publicly sided with the Saudis and Emiratis early in the crisis but is now pushing for a resolution to restore Gulf Arab unity and maintain a united front against Iran.

Despite widespread Arab condemnation of the suspected chemical attack, the Dhahran summit is unlikely to call for Assad to step down.

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