May 10 2012
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Riyadh asks NAM states to recognize Palestine
Saudi Arabia yesterday denounced the decades long Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territory and said it is a perfect example of injustice and violation of human rights in some parts of the Middle East.
Addressing a ministerial conference of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), Prince Turki bin Muhammad, foreign ministry undersecretary for multilateral relations, reiterated Saudi Arabia's support for the Palestinian issue.
Prince Turki said Saudi Arabia would also be in the forefront of international efforts to find a just, speedy and comprehensive solution to the Syria crisis. He called for immediate efforts to end violence in the country and distribute relief aid to the victims.
"The Kingdom has written off more than $ 6 billion debt of developing countries and given $ 1 billion to fight poverty in the Islamic world and $ 500 million each to the energy for the poor program and World Food Program," the official pointed out.
Referring to the UAE-Iran island row, Prince Turki emphasized the Kingdom's full support for Abu Dhabi to establish its sovereignty over the three islands -- Abu Musa and the Greater and Lesser Tunbs -- that are currently occupied by Iran.
The Kingdom also denounced the April 11 visit of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Abu Musa Island, describing it as a provocative act.
The Kingdom called for making the Middle East free from weapons of mass destruction. However, it said countries in the region should have the right to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. "We call upon Iran, all Middle Eastern countries and Israel to abide by international agreements regarding nuclear programs."
He urged Tehran to cooperate with international efforts to find a peaceful solution for its nuclear standoff with the West to avert an arms race and new dangers.
He urged NAM countries to support Yemen and strengthen its security and contribute to its economic stability. The Kingdom urged South Sudan to respect its borders with Sudan on the basis of the January 1956 border and implement all the agreements between the two countries and settle their differences through peaceful means.
Prince Turki also referred to Saudi Arabia's efforts to combat terrorism as well as the historic interfaith dialogue initiative taken by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosque King Abdullah to promote world peace and security indicating that the Kingdom has funded the establishment of King Abdullah Dialogue Center in Vienna. He also noted the Kingdom's ongoing efforts to protect human rights.
© Arab News 2012
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