Last updated on: 1/28/2016 12:35:29 PM PST
What Are the Official Positions of the Surrounding Arab States, Turkey, and Iran in Relation to Israel and the Palestinian Territories?
General Reference (not clearly pro or con)
The Arab League adopted the Arab Peace Initiative at the Arab Summit in Beirut in Mar. 2002.
The Arab League, in an Apr. 29, 2013 meeting between John Kerry, Secretary of State of the United States, Joe Biden, Vice President of the United States, and a delegation of Arab League members including Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani, Prime Minister of Qatar and Head of the Arab League Arab Peace Initiative (API) follow-up committee, Nabil el-Araby, Secretary General of the Arab League, and representatives from Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, the Palestinian Authority, and Saudi Arabia, and reported on by the Washington Institute, available at their website, reaffirmed:
"[Arab League] support of the API along with land exchange, or 'landswaps,' as part of a final peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians."The Arab League's Kuwait Declaration, released at the conclusion of the 25th Arab Summit on Mar. 26, 2014, details of which is available on Kuwait's Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, stated:
"We express our absolute and decisive rejection to recognizing Israel as a Jewish state."The Jordan News Agency (PETRA), reporting on a statement by the Arab League Council following the Arab Foreign Ministers' meeting on Mar. 9, 2014, available on petra.gov.jo, wrote:
"Arab foreign ministers' meeting in Cairo on Sunday pledged not to recognise Israel as a Jewish state and reiterated full support to the Palestinian Authority's efforts to end the Israeli occupation.
Egypt abides by Article II of the 1979 Egyptian / Israeli Peace Treaty which stated the following:
"The permanent boundary between Egypt and Israel is the recognized international boundary between Egypt and the former mandated territory of Palestine... without prejudice to the issue of the status of the Gaza Strip. The Parties recognize this boundary as inviolable. Each will respect the territorial integrity of the other, including their territorial waters and airspace."Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, President of Egypt, reaffirmed in a conversation with Shimon Peres, President of Israel at the time of the quote, and Benjamin Netanyahu, MS, Prime Minister of Israel, and reported on June 7, 2014 by the Ynetnews website, that:
"[The Peace Treaty] is an important commitment that can be relied and built upon in order to serve both countries' interests."
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader of Iran, in a description of his speech to university students on July 23, 2014 via Facebook, stated:
"Since its illegitimate birth since 66 years ago, the Zionist regime has done whatever crime one can imagine against Palestine. There is no way to stop the infanticidal Zionist regime but the elimination of this regime; not via war but via referendum... In the absence of a referendum, fighting Zionists is realized through resolute and armed resistance of Palestinians which is recognized by international laws... I believe West Bank should be armed just like Gaza. Those who love Palestine should arm the people of Palestine in the West Bank."Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, PhD, Iranian President at the time of the quote, in an Aug. 17, 2012 speech broadcast on State television marking Quds Day and reprinted on the France24 website under the title "'Cancerous Tumour' Israel Will Soon Be Destroyed, Says Ahmadinejad," stated:
Khudayr al-Khuzai, Vice President of Iraq at the time of the quote, during a Sep. 27, 2012 speech at the 13th plenary meeting of United Nations General Assembly's 67th Session, the transcript of which is available at the United Nations Disarmament Reference Library website, stated:
"Iraq's unwavering and well-known position does not deviate from the Arab ranks on issues of crucial importance to our Arab nation. We accordingly support the establishment of the State of Palestine in the occupied Palestinian territories, with Jerusalem as its capital, and declare our support for the membership of the State of Palestine in the United Nations. We also declare our unequivocal rejection of the policies of oppression, Judaization and usurpation of land that Israel pursues without regard for international condemnation of its unjust practices, including the use of brutal force. We also reject Israel's disregard for the repeated international calls to sign the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and to place its military arsenal and facilities under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency."Ayad Allawi, MD, Iraqi Interim Prime Minister, in a July 26, 2004 Associated Press article titled "Allawi: No Normalization with Israel," stated the following:
"Future relations with Israel are determined by two issues: international resolutions and a just and comprehensive peace that has been adopted by Arab leaderships, including the Palestinian leadership. Iraq will not take any unilateral action on a settlement with Israel outside those two frameworks... Any future ties between Iraq and Israel will be determined by the international legitimacy and the Arab-adopted option of fair and comprehensive peace."[Editor's Note: Following a handshake between Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak that caused outrage among some members of the Iraqi Parliament at the 23rd Socialist International Congress on July 1, 2008, Talabani stated the following (available at the BBC website):
"[The handshake] was a civilized social act... It does not mean any obligations for the state of Iraq... and will not affect its support for the Palestinian people and the Palestinian Authority and reliance on Arab unity, the Arab initiative and legitimate international resolutions... There is still a wide gap between the respective positions that cannot be overcome unless the Israeli government adopts positions and measures that will clearly emphasize its sheer desire to seize an opportunity to achieve peace."]
The first three general principles in Article II of the 1994 Israeli / Jordanian Peace Treaty, stated the following:
"They [Israel & Jordan] recognise and will respect each other's sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence;Nassar Judeh, Jordanian Minister of Foreign Affairs, in a Feb. 4, 2014 response to a question posed in the Lower House regarding the possibility of Jordanian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, and reported on The Times of Israel website, stated:
"With regards to the rumors surrounding the Jewish state, Jordan's consistent position — aligned in this regard with the Palestinian position — is that this formula and this proposal is unacceptable."King Abdullah II of Jordan, during an Aug. 10, 2014 interview with Jordanian daily newspaper Al Ghad, the transcript of which is available at King Abdullah II's website, stated:
"The world bears the responsibility of ending an occupation, which is the last of its kind in modern history, and to end denying our brotherly people their right to establish their own state on their national soil, as well as ending an ongoing unjust siege and Israeli settlement activities that undermine peace prospects... The two-state solution is the only way to end the conflict and establish security and stability for the entire region. Israel's security will not be achieved without a genuine pursuit of comprehensive just peace and the two-state solution, and without the establishment of a sovereign, geographically contiguous, Palestinian state along the 5 June 1967 lines, according to international accords and the Arab Peace Initiative, with East Jerusalem as its capital, and an economy that has the potential to grow and prosper. This is the only way for Israel to guarantee its security and gain the acceptance of the region and the entire world."
At its 5511th meeting on Aug. 11, 2006, the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1701 which called for a full cessation of hostilities between Hezbollah and Israel and which "stressed the importance of, and the need to achieve, a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East." The Resolution was unanimously approved by both the Lebanese and Israeli cabinets.
Nawaf Salam, PhD, Permanent Representative of Lebanon to the United Nations, in a Jan. 20, 2014 speech to the UN Security Council titled, "The Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian Question," available at www.un.int, stated:
"Despite all the challenges facing my country, Lebanon remains committed to the full implementation of SC resolution 1701, and stresses the need for you to act swiftly to put an immediate end to the systematic Israeli violations of Lebanon's sovereignty by land, air and sea. My delegation have kept you informed of these violations and requested that its letters to that effect be circulated as official documents of the United Nations."Tammam Salam, Prime Minister of Lebanon, in a Jan. 28, 2015 statement reported on by the Lebanese Daily Star newspaper, available at the Daily Star website, stated:
"Lebanon places the international community in front of their responsibilities and urges them to restrain Israel's tendency to gamble with the region’s security and stability...Michel Sleiman, Lebanese President at the time of the quote, speaking at the 25th Arab Summit on Mar. 25, 2014, the transcript of which is available at the Presidency of the Republic of Lebanon's website, stated:
"The major challenge remains our capacity to influence and press for a just and comprehensive solution to all the aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict, away from bilateral or partial solutions, according to the resolutions of the international legitimacy, the terms of reference of the Madrid Conference, and the integral provisions of the Arab Peace Initiative which confirms the Arab right to the land, to the establishment of a free and independent Palestinian State, the guarantee of the non-settlement of Palestinian Refugees in the Arab States whose particular situation does not allow such a settlement, namely Lebanon; all of this at a time when Israel still pursues its occupation, intransigence, attempts to Judaize the Holy Sites, and hostile practices against the Palestinian people."
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia, in a statement titled "Kingdom Stance on Palestinian Issue," available at their website, last updated on May 4, 2010 (accessed May 8, 2015), stated:
"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia adopted all resolutions of international organizations with regard to Palestinians. It also participated in numerous meetings and conferences on the Palestinian issue since Madrid conference to Road Plan. In this respect, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia presented the Saudi peace initiative proposed by his Royal Highness Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, and adopted by Arab states in Beirut Summit in March 2002. The Initiative maintains peace and stability to all nations and guarantees a just, lasting, and comprehensive solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al Saud, Saudi Arabia's Ambassador to the UK, in a July 26, 2014 press release in response to allegations of a Saudi-Israeli alliance against Gaza made by David Hearst, editor of the Middle East Eye, available at the Embassies of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's website, wrote:
"Saudi Arabia in the past, now and in the future will do all it can to support the Palestinian people in their claim for the return of their own land and for self-determination in their own state.King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, in a Mar. 2015 speech before the Royal Family, Officials, Clerics and Members of the Consultative Council, a transcript of which is available on the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, stated:
"One of the most important principles is the Kingdom's continuation of adhering to the international treaties, conventions and charters, including respecting the principle of sovereignty and rejecting any attempt of intervention in our internal affairs, continued defense of Arab and Islamic issues in the international forums in various ways, including achievement of what the Kingdom has always sought and will always seek; namely, that the Palestinian people be granted their legitimate rights and be able to establish their independent state with Al-Quds as its capital."
A statement by the Syrian government, reported on in a Jan. 30, 2013 New York Times article titled "Israeli Airstrike in Syria Targets Arms Convoy, US Says," states:
"The Syrian government points out to the international community that this Israeli arrogance and aggression is dangerous for Syrian sovereignty... and stresses that such criminal acts will not weaken Syria's role nor will discourage Syrians from continuing to support resistance movements and just Arab causes, particularly the Palestinian issue."Walid Al-Moualem, Syrian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, in an address to the United Nations General Assembly on Sep. 30, 2013, available at the United Nations website, stated:
"The Syrian Arab Republic confirms its natural right to fully restore the occupied Syrian Golan up to the line of June 4, 1967, and emphasizes its rejection of all measures taken by Israel, the occupying power, to change its natural, demographic and geographic features in a clear violation of the relevant Security Council resolutions, in particular resolution 497 (1981). Syria reconfirms its support for the legitimate and inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, in particular their right of return and self-determination, and to establish their independent state on their land, with Jerusalem as its capital."Bashar Al-Jaafari, PhD, the Permanent Representative of Syria to the United Nations, in an address the UN Security Council in Jan. 2015, available from YouTube, stated:
"The UN bears a historical and legal responsibility towards the establishment of an independent Palestinian State with full sovereignty over its entire national territory. This responsibility stems from the provisions of Resolution 181 of 1947... and Resolution 273 of 1949... as well as Resolution 194 of 1948... Israel, following its creation has followed in spirit and in letter a policy of expansion and ethnic cleansing that has led to its occupation of Arab territories in 1967. Successive Israeli governments... have committed systematic and documented violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law... Israel continues its occupation of the Syrian Golan since 1967. It imposes on Syrian citizens living under this occupation a bitter reality that cannot be tolerated... The Syrian Golan is and will remain Syrian territory. We shall continue to struggle for its independence until full restoration to its borders of June 4th 1967. This right is not subject to negotiation; it is not subject to bargaining; nor is it subject to any statute of limitations. All Israeli actions will not change anything in that regard. Israeli actions, including the so-called decision of annexing the Golan which is in fact the crime of annexing the Golan are null and void. They have no legal effect in accordance to United Nations relevant Resolutions, particularly your Security Council Resolution 497 of 1981. What we would state and stress about the ineluctability of Israeli withdrawal from the occupied Syrian territory applies to the Occupied Palestinian territory and what remains under occupation in Southern Lebanon."
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Prime Minister of Turkey at the time of the quote, in a statement to reporters on July 18, 2014 printed on the Hurriyet Daily News website in an article titled "Ankara Rebukes Israel as a Threat to International Peace" at the Hurriyet Daily News website, stated:
"Israel is a country threatening the world's peace. It's a country that threatens the Middle East peace. [Israel] has never pretended to be pro-peace. It has always tormented [the Palestinian people], and today it is continuing to do so… The government and I will never look positively [at Israel] as long as we are in power."The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in a July 22, 2014 response to a question regarding allegations that Turkey is in cooperation with Israel with respect to energy and defense, available at their website, stated:
"Turkey downgraded its diplomatic relations with Israel to the minimum level and suspended all military ties between the two countries following the attack carried out by Israel in the international waters against a humanitarian aid convoy by the non-governmental organizations to Gaza on 31 May 2010, in which ten Turkish civilians had lost their lives. No official agreement has been concluded in these fields, including defense industry, between Turkey and Israel during the said period.The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in a Feb. 10, 2015, press release "Regarding Israel's Illegal Settlement Activities," available at their website, stated:
"Israel continues to undermine the ground for a just, lasting and comprehensive solution in the region by its illegal settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory.