2001 Speech

Prince Sultan's address to 13th Arab Summit in Amman
Second Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector-General Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz gave an address in Amman to the 13th Arab Summit on March 28, 2001

In the name of God, the Merciful, the Beneficent:

Peace and blessings be upon the best of men, our prophet Muhammad, his family and companions.


Your Majesty, King Abdullah bin Al-Hussein, King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and Chairman of the Conference:

Your Majesties, Excellencies and Highnesses; Your Excellency the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States; your excellencies, members of the delegations:

Peace be with you.

I am glad to convey to this distinguished gathering greetings from the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd bin Abdulaziz and his trusted Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz; and the hopes of the government and people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia that our efforts here are successful.

I would like to express my deep appreciation to His Majesty King Abdullah and the people of Jordan for their fraternal feelings toward us and the hospitality they have accorded us, reflecting the noble traditions of our faithful Arab people and their wise leadership.

I also extend thanks and appreciation to His Excellency President Muhammad Hosni Mubarak, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, for the good and sincere efforts he exerted during his chairmanship of the previous session of the conference. I also would like to express my great appreciation to His Excellency the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States Dr. Esmat Abdulmajeed, for his extensive efforts during execution of his duties. I also would like to extend congratulations to His Excellency Amr Musa for the trust accorded to him by this revered conference, and to wish him every success.

The convening of this conference, the first Arab Summit within the framework of regular convention of the Summit Council of the League of Arab States, promises much for Arab solidarity and joint Arab efforts, and makes us optimistic about a bright Arab future promising greater closeness and cooperation, underlining the vitality and greatness of the Arab World. This enables it to play its role as a source for human civilization and a strong supporter of the values of peace, justice and equality.

The idea of regular convention must not be a goal in itself but rather a means for reaching achievements and desired objectives. In this regard, we should realize the necessity of changing our approach and methodology for dealing with issues facing the Arab World.

The first thing that we should realize and understand is the importance of not treating mistakes lightly or overlooking them, but rather we should confront them and address the imbalance that results from these dangers and pitfalls that fill our contemporary history. Dynamic nations are those that build their renaissance and nobility on the treasure of the values and ethics they possess, and make them the reference point that governs their behavior and illuminates their path. It is particularly unacceptable for us to disapprove of others' double standards and dubious conduct while we overlook these shortcomings in our dealings with each other.

On the other hand, and within the framework of our efforts to enhance the mechanisms of the joint Arab efforts, we must also realize that integration among our countries cannot be reached without paying a price and without the willingness to sacrifice in the context of dealing with each other provided that the final result is in the interests of all. The interests of all can only be guaranteed by the achievement by each country of real gains through integration amongst us. In turn, this will not be realized if each country's goal is to get everything without willingness to sacrifice anything.

Our Arab World is facing grave challenges, chief among them the killing, destruction and siege faced by our brothers in Palestine at the hands of Israel's brutal occupation authorities in an attempt to stop the brave intifada and prolong the occupation. It is a grave injustice that the international community is silently watching these inhuman practices perpetrated by Israel against the Palestinian people.

In this context, we demand that the UN Security Council approve the legitimate demands of the Palestinian people that international protection be provided for them.

We also demand that the sponsors of the peace process and the countries of the European Union shoulder their responsibilities and take all required measures to stop the Israeli aggression, raise the siege imposed on the Palestinians, urge Israel to resume negotiations from the point where they stopped, implement the United Nations resolutions 242, 338 and 194 stipulating withdrawal of Israeli occupation forces from all occupied territories, notably the city of Al-Quds [Jerusalem], the Syrian Golan Heights and the Lebanese Shaba'a farms, and enable the Palestinian people to set up their independent state on their own national soil with Al-Quds [Jerusalem] as its capital, together with securing the return of Palestinian refugees to their homes.

We in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and as my brother His Royal Highness Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz said at the emergency Arab Summit in Cairo, are aware that supporting our Palestinian brothers should not be confined to moral and political support alone, but should cover all aspects. We therefore hope that both the intifada fund and the Al-Aqsa fund will receive support from all of us to enable the Palestinians to preserve the Arab and Islamic identity of Al-Quds and arrange for care for the families of the Palestinian martyrs who fell in the intifada.