The Palestinians have stepped down from a key Arab League role in protest at the regional bloc’s failure to take a stand against Israeli-Arab deals, an official said Tuesday.
Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki announced the decision to resign from the rotating presidency of the Council of the Arab League, after its failure to agree a draft resolution condemning a normalization accord between the UAE and Israel.
“The state of Palestine… refuses to record in its history the association of its presidency with the regression in values and principles that was evident in the last meeting of the council of foreign ministers,” Maliki said in the West Bank town of Ramallah.
The Palestinians presided over the council’s latest session earlier this month and had been due to stay in the role until March.
Their delegation had tabled a draft resolution at the meeting of the council, which brings together foreign ministers of the 22-member bloc, to condemn the normalization accord.
The Cairo meeting came ahead of another such deal being announced by Bahrain with the Jewish state. Both deals were signed in Washington on September 15.
The Gulf agreements broke with years of Arab League policy on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and were condemned by the Palestinians as a “betrayal”.
In 2002, the bloc adopted a Saudi-proposed peace plan which was renewed as recently as 2017.
It offered normalization only in return for a full Israeli withdrawal from territories it occupied in the 1967 Six-Day War, a Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital and a just solution for Palestinian refugees.
The Arab plan has been pushed aside by the US administration, which after several delays unveiled a controversial peace blueprint of its own in January.
It promised Washington’s blessing for Israel’s eventual annexation of swathes of the occupied West Bank.
The United Arab Emirates government hailed a clause in its US-brokered deal that appeared to put any Israeli annexations on hold.
But Israel retorted that any delay would be short-lived and its annexation plans remained on the table.
© 2020 AFP
GOP frets over ‘green tsunami’ as Democrats spend millions on the offensive in red House seats: report
On Tuesday, The New York Times reported that Republicans are frustrated over the blitz of Democratic spending in House races, acknowledging they are likely to see their minority shrink even further.
"Bolstered by an enormous cash-on-hand advantage, a series of critical Republican recruitment failures and a wave of liberal enthusiasm, Democrats have fortified their grip on hard-fought seats won in 2018 that allowed them to seize control of the House," reported Emily Cochrane and Catie Edmondson. "They have trained their firepower and huge campaign coffers on once-solid Republican footholds in affluent suburban districts, where many voters have become disillusioned with Mr. Trump."
3 ex-Trump Organization executives explain why the president is a disaster — and they’re voting for Biden
MSNBC's Ari Melber asked his guests Tuesday why, specifically, they thought Joe Biden might be better than Trump for America now right now.
"It comes down to one simple thing for me, Ari, and that's race. He's with a man that understands and appreciates diversity over this nation. I think Biden does and I know for a fact Trump doesn't. He will never appreciate the diversity that made this country great," Jack O'Donnell said.
Melania Trump turns her back on #BeBest campaign — and praises husband’s insane tweets at MAGA rally
First lady Melania Trump on Tuesday suggested her husband's unhinged and factually-challenged tweets were actually a good thing for America.
The comments came in stark contrast to the message of her #BeBest campaign against online bullying.
"For the first time in history, the citizens of this country get to hear directly and instantly from their president every single day through social media," she said at a campaign rally in Atglen, Pennsylvania while reading prepared remarks off a teleprompter.
The crowd applauded.
"I do not always agree what -- they way he says things, but it is important to him that he speaks directly to the people he serves," she said.