Extraordinary Arab Summit
Cairo, 21-22 October 2000
The Arab leaders affirm that the al-Aqsa intifada has broken out as a result of the maintenance and perpetuation of the occupation and because of Israel's encroachments on the Haram al-Sharif in Jerusalem and on the other Islamic and Christian Holy Places in the occupied Palestinian territories.
The Arab leaders bring to mind with reverence, as they recall to the world, the martyrs who have sacrificed their lives in defense of their occupied land and the things they held sacred without heed for the war machine deployed by Israel to confront the unarmed, defenseless Palestinian people. They affirm the right of the Palestinian people to exact just compensation from Israel for the damage and the human and material losses it has sustained.
In response to a proposal by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, they hereby decide to establish two funds. The al-Aqsa Fund will be allocated a sum of 800 million dollars for the funding of projects designed to preserve the Arab and Islamic identity of Jerusalem and prevent its loss and to enable the Palestinian people to disengage from its subordination to the Israeli economy. The al-Quds Intifada Fund will have a capital of 200 million dollars to be allocated for disbursement to the families of Palestinian martyrs fallen in the intifada and for providing the means necessary for the care and education of their children. They express their deep appreciation to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques for his decision that the kingdom will contribute one-quarter of the total sum to be allocated to the two funds.
The Arab leaders call upon all members of the Arab nation to donate one day's wages as a citizens' contribution to support the intifada and in order to assist the Palestinian national struggle at the crucial juncture at which our Arab nation finds itself.
The Arab leaders call for the formation, within the framework of the United Nations, of an impartial international commission of inquiry to report to the Security Council and the Commission on Human Rights on the causes of and responsibility for the grave deterioration in the occupied Palestinian territories and the atrocities committed by the Israeli occupation forces against the Palestinian and Lebanese peoples and other Arab residents of the occupied territories. They stress in this connection the provisions of Security Council Resolution 1322 (2000) of 7 October 2000, the resolution adopted by the Commission on Human Rights at its special session on 19 October 2000, and the resolution adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 20 October 2000. They urge the Security Council to keep developments in the situation in the occupied Palestinian and Arab territories under review in the light of the threat that situation poses to international peace and security, and they call for the Security Council and the United Nations General Assembly to assume responsibility for providing the necessary protection to the Palestinian people under Israeli occupation by giving consideration to the establishment of a force or an international presence for this purpose, given that the United Nations bears permanent responsibility for the land and people of Palestine until such time as the Palestinian people secures the exercise of its inalienable rights in Palestine in accordance with international legitimacy.
The Arab leaders affirm that peace must be based on the concepts of universality and justice as necessary preconditions if it is to be accepted and maintained. They affirm that this Arab position calls for a corresponding commitment on the part of Israel, which must meet it with an unequivocal stance based on compliance with the international rule of law in accordance with Security Council Resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973), United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 (III), concerning the right of Palestinian refugees to repatriation and compensation, the other relevant United Nations resolutions and the principles governing the peace process, primarily the principle of land for peace.
The Arab leaders affirm that a just and comprehensive peace can only ever be achieved with the return of Jerusalem to full Palestinian sovereignty and the acceptance of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to establish an independent state with its capital at Jerusalem – which is Palestinian territory that has been occupied since 1967 to say nothing of its spiritual significance and its religious status. All the occupied Arab territories must also be returned, and this includes Israel's full withdrawal from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip as well as from the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, to the line of 4 June 1967, complete withdrawal from southern Lebanon, including the Shaba' farmlands, up to the internationally recognized boundaries, the release of Arab prisoners and detainees in Israeli prisons in compliance with the relevant United Nations resolutions, and the removal of Israeli settlements in implementation of Security Council Resolution 465 (1980).
In this context, the Arab leaders reaffirm their support for their brothers in Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine. They affirm their commitment to their legitimate rights and to the restoration of all their occupied territories. They also affirm in this connection their rejection of any attempts to impose a peace that is unjust or lacking in balance on the basis of Israeli claims and at the expense of Arab rights and interests.
In the light of the setback to the peace process, the Arab leaders affirm their commitment to oppose with resolve Israel's attempts to penetrate the Arab world, under any designation, and to suspend the maintenance of any relations with Israel. They hold Israel responsible for the measures and decisions to be taken by the Arab states in connection with their relations with it, including their severance, such as will be required in order to counter the suspension of the peace process, the grave developments to which that has recently given rise and the complications it has caused in the Arab and Islamic arenas, until such time as a comprehensive and just peace is achieved.
While emphasizing that the halt to the peace process on all bilateral tracks has caused the suspension of the multilateral track, the Arab leaders affirm that issues of regional cooperation cannot be addressed without real progress toward a just and comprehensive peace in the region. The halt in the peace process caused by Israel's policy and by its provocative practices makes talk of a common future in the region untimely. They hereby decide not to resume or participate in any official or informal activity in the multilateral framework and to suspend all measures and activities for regional economic cooperation with Israel in this framework and to link their resumption and their scope to the attainment of tangible progress toward a just and comprehensive peace on all the tracks of the peace progress…
Source: Journal of Palestine Studies, vol. xxx, no. 2, Winter 2001, pp. 172-3.