Saudi Arabia and Muslim countries have called for an immediate end to military operations in Gaza, stating at a joint Islamic-Arab summit in Riyadh that Israel is responsible for “crimes” against Palestinians. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, convened the summit to exert influence and pressure the United States and Israel to cease hostilities in Gaza. The meeting was attended by numerous leaders, including Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Prince Mohammed expressed the kingdom’s condemnation and rejection of the “barbaric war” against Palestinians, emphasizing the failure of the Security Council and the international community to address Israeli violations of international laws. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas described the situation as a “genocidal war” and called on the United States to end Israeli aggression. President Raisi praised Hamas for its resistance against Israel and urged Islamic countries to impose sanctions on Israel. The Middle East has been tense since Hamas fighters entered Israel, resulting in numerous casualties. Israel has escalated its assault on Gaza, leading to a significant number of deaths, including many children.
The article also highlights the division among Arab countries regarding their response to the conflict. Some countries, led by Algeria, called for a complete severing of diplomatic ties with Israel, while others, which have established relations with Israel, emphasized the importance of maintaining communication with the Israeli government. The war has disrupted traditional Middle East alliances, with Saudi Arabia engaging more closely with Iran, resisting U.S. pressure to condemn Hamas, and postponing plans to normalize ties with Israel. Iranian President Raisi’s visit to Saudi Arabia marks the first by an Iranian head of state in over a decade, following the resolution of years of hostility between Tehran and Riyadh through a Chinese-brokered deal in March. Turkish President Erdogan called for an international peace conference to find a permanent solution to the conflict, emphasizing the need for a lasting ceasefire in Gaza. Qatar’s Emir expressed his country’s efforts to mediate the release of Israeli hostages and expressed hope for a humanitarian truce. The article concludes by mentioning that the extraordinary summits of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Arab League, originally scheduled to be hosted by Saudi Arabia, have been replaced by the joint summit due to the “extraordinary” situation in Gaza. Hamas has called on the summit to take decisive action to halt Israeli aggression. Arab foreign ministers are divided, with some advocating for a complete diplomatic cut-off from Israel, while others argue for maintaining open channels with the Israeli government.
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