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The Arab League: Declaration of the Arab Summit Conference at Algiers

(November 28, 1973)

In the last week of November 1973, Arab Heads of State met in Algiers at a summit conference. At the conclusion of the conference, a declaration was issued, parts of which are given below in an unofficial translation from the French. On 4 December, the Lebanese newspaper Al Nahar published the text of the secret resolutions adopted in Algiers. (Following the publication the editor of the newspaper was arrested.) Text of the secret resolutions also follow.

The Arab world is passing through a decisive stage in its history. The struggle against Zionist invasion is a long-term historic responsibility which will require still further trials and sacrifices.

While the war of October 1973 showed the Arab nation's determination to liberate its occupied territories at all cost, the cease-fire in the field means in no way that the struggle has ended and that there can be imposed upon the Arab nation a solution not meeting its just goals.

So long as the causes of the war of aggression and expansion, which put the world on the edge of a generalised conflict, are not eliminated, there will be in the Middle East neither a lasting peace nor true security.

The October war, like those that took place earlier, is an unavoidable consequence of the policy of aggression and fait accompli pursued by Israel in defiance of principles and decisions by the international organizations and of the law of nations. Since the spoliation of the Palestinian people and its expulsion from its fatherland, Israel had. not ceased expanding, taking advantage of the active complicity and economic, technological and military support of the imperialist countries and above all of the US.

This collusion came to light recently in the mobilization of unprecedented financial and material means, a massive use of specialized mercenaries and the unleashing of a political campaign pursued in union by all the enemies of the Third World's emancipation.

Beyond its policy of war and territorial expansion, Israel also aims, in the framework of the imperialist strategy, at destroying all the possibilities of development by the peoples in the area. At this juncture, marked by the rise of the movements of national liberation and decolonization, Zionism thus appears as a serious resurgence of the colonial system and its methods of domination and economic exploitation.

In spite of the complicity binding Israel and international imperialism, which puts at its disposal the most refined means for the pursuit of its aggressive designs, the Arab nation has never abandoned its national goals nor has it backed down before the imperatives of its struggle. Far from weakening its national will, the set-back and trials have only stimulated and strengthened it.

In October 1973, the Egyptian and Syrian armed forces, together with the Palestinian resistance supported by other Arab forces, inflicted severe blows on the Israeli aggressors.

The Arab peoples and their Governments gained in this fight a sharp awareness of their responsibilities and their material and human means. This awareness resulted in practical solidarity which showed its efficiency and which forms a new dimension in the process of Arab liberation.

The expansionist character of Israel policy has become clear to all. Israel's alleged friendship with the African peoples has been unmasked and alone in Africa, the colonialist and racist regimes of South Africa, Rhodesia and Portugal lend it their support.

Israel's policy has likewise been openly condemned by other non-aligned nations.

The diplomatic isolation of Israel has today become a reality. It is significant in this respect that certain European Governments, which traditionally have been won over to the Israeli viewpoint, are beginning to wonder about the foundations of an adventurous policy which has raised grave risks for international peace and co-operation.

The cease-fire, put into force more than a month ago, still keeps running into the Israeli side's manoeuvres and obstruction.

The cease-fire is not yet peace and peace presupposes, if it is to be achieved, a certain number of conditions. Among these are two which are paramount and unchangeable:

1. Evacuation by Israel of the occupied Arab territories and first of all Jerusalem.

2. Re-establishment of full national rights for the Palestinian people.

So long as these two conditions have not been met, it will be illusory to expect in the Middle East anything but a continuation of unstable and explosive situations and new confrontations.

There is no doubt that the Arab nation will never agree to engage its future in an equivocal way with the sole basis being vague promises and secret dealings ...

Peace can be achieved only in full light, far from all manoeuvres and scheming and on the basis of the principles spelled out in this declaration. Thus the Arab countries, kings and chiefs of State believe that any serious and constructive co-ordination of their policies must take place on this basis.

If the conditions of a just peace are not available and if the Arab efforts in favour of peace run into refusal from Israel and its allies, the Arab countries will be forced to draw all the consequences and to continue, in the long-term perspective, their liberation struggle by all means and in all fields.

Determined to accomplish their duty, ready for sacrifices and abnegation, the Arab nation will not cease intensifying its struggle.

Secret Resolutions of the Algiers Summit Conference From AI-Nahar, Beirut, 4 December 1973

a. The Current Goals of the Arab Nation

The Conference resolves that the goals of the current phase of the common Arab struggle are:

1. The complete liberation of all the Arab territories conquered during the aggression of June 1967, with no concession or abandonment of any part of them, or detriment to national sovereignty over them.

2. Liberation of the Arab city of Jerusalem, and rejection of any situation which may be harmful to complete Arab sovereignty over the Holy City.

3. Commitment to restoration of the national rights of the Palestinian people, according to the decisions of the Palestine Liberation Organization, as the sole representative of the Palestinian nation. (The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan expressed reservations.)

4. The Palestine problem is the affair of all the Arabs, and no Arab party can possibly dissociate itself from this commitment, in the light of the resolutions of previous Summit Conferences.

b. Military

In view of continuation of the struggle against the enemy until the goals of our nation are attained, the liberation of the occupied territories and the restoration of the national rights of the Palestinian people, the Conference resolves:

1. Solidarity of all the Arab States with Egypt, Syria and the Palestinian nation, in the common struggle for attainment of the just goals of the Arabs.

2. Provision of all means of military and financial support to both fronts, Egyptian and Syrian, to strengthen their military capacity for embarking on the liberation campaign and standing fast in face of the tremendous amount of supplies and unlimited aid received by the enemy.

3. Support of Palestinian resistance by all possible measures, to ensure its active role in the campaign.

c. Economic

Considering the significance of the economy in the campaign against the enemy, and the need to use every weapon at the disposal of the Arabs, as well as to concentrate all resources to enhance fighting capacity, the Conference resolves:

1. To strengthen economic ties among the Arab States, and empower the Arab Economic Council to set up a plan of operations to that end.

2. To continue the use of oil as a weapon in the campaign, in view of the resolutions of the oil Ministers and the link between the revocation of the ban on oil exports to any country and the commitment of that country to support the just cause of the Arabs. To establish a committee, subordinate to the oil Ministers, which will follow up the implementation of these resolutions and those of the oil Ministers with regard to the percentage of the cut in oil supply, so as to arrive at coordination between this committee and the committee of Foreign Ministers of the oil-producing countries in respect of the development of the positions of other countries vis-à-vis the Arab cause.

3. To strengthen, as is vital, the steadfast attitude within the occupied territories, and assure it.

4. To make good war-damages of the Arab States, and to heighten the spirit of struggle and the combat capacity of the countries involved in the confrontation.

d. Political

Political activity complements the military campaign, and is regarded as its continuation, all as part of our struggle against the enemy. As a direct result of the positions of foreign States toward the just struggle of the Arabs, the Conference resolves:

1. In Africa:

(a) To strengthen Arab-African cooperation in political affairs and enlarge Arab diplomatic representation in Africa.

(b) To sever all the diplomatic, consular, economic, cultural and other relations with South Africa, Portugal and Rhodesia of those Arab States which have not yet done so.

(c) Completely to ban Arab oil exports to those three States.

(d) To take special measures to continue the regular supply of Arab oil to sister States in Africa.

(e) To strengthen economic, financial and cultural cooperation with sister-States in Africa, and widen its scope on the bilateral plane as well as on that of the regional Arab and African organizations.

(f) To establish an Arab-African financial organization, which will share in the plans for economic and social development and the supply of technical aid to the countries of Africa. The Arab Economic Ministers will lay down the rules of the organization and the amount of its capital.

(g) To give instant aid to African peoples suffering from the effects of natural catastrophe and drought.

(h) To increase material and diplomatic support of the struggles of Arab liberation movements.

(i) As a means to hasten implementation of these resolutions and the establishment of constant cooperation between the Arab and African States, to instruct the General Secretariat of the Arab League to take the operational steps and to be in contact with the General Secretariat of the Organization of African Unity and the Seven States' Committee connected with it, with a view to holding periodic conferences at the various levels, as well as at the top echelon, between Arab and African States.

2. In the Non-Aligned Countries

(a) To work for implementation of the resolutions of the Algiers Conference respecting the non-aligned States, as concerns the boycotting of Israel in political, economic and military matters, and to instruct Algeria, in its capacity as chairman of the Conference, to convene a special high-echelon meeting for the application of the said resolutions.

(b) To work for ensuring of the continuation of support by these nations for the Arab struggle against Zionism, using every possible means.

3. In the Moslem Countries

(a) To attempt to convince Moslem States which maintain relations with Israel to sever political, economic and cultural ties.

(b) To attempt to increase the degree of coordination between these nations and the Arab struggle in all spheres.

4. In Western Europe

(a) To demand that the countries of the Common Market persist in and further develop the political stance initiated in their statement of 6 November 1973.

(b) To demand that the countries of Western Europe cease their military and economic support of Israel.

(c) To ensure that these countries lift their embargo on the export of arms to the Arab States.

(d) To ensure that pressure is applied on the USA to cease providing the enemy with aid.

5. In Asia

To continue the efforts directed at Asian States which maintain relations with Israel, so that political, economic and cultural ties with Israel shall be severed, and to adopt a position of additional support of those Arab States in Asia whose territories are occupied.

6. In the USSR and Countries of East Europe

To continue the contact with these countries, for the following ends:

(a) Continued support on their part for the Arab cause in all spheres.

(b) Supply of arms to the Arab States and fronts to enable the Arabs to confront the enemy as equals, quantitatively as well as qualitatively.

(c) Success in persuading Romania to sever its political and economic relations with Israel.

7. People's Republic of China

To continue Arab contacts with the People's Republic of China, and ensure its continued support for the Arab cause and its supply of all possible aid.

8. USA

(a) To take action so that the US Government will change its position of identification with Israel; to warn it of the dangers inherent in the pursuit of its present policy as regards its interests in the Arab region.

(b) To intensify efforts to make it clear to the American people and the various media that the Arab cause is justified, as well as pointing out the danger to the interests of the American people and to world peace and security inherent in US identification with Israel.

e. Arab Information

The Conference discussed the subject of Arab information abroad, and the need to strengthen it at the present stage, and coordination between Arab delegations in overseas capitals, as well as the need to benefit from their experience in this sphere. Resolutions were as follows:

1. To participate at the present time in an Arab propaganda fund, which will serve the need of the aftermath of the 6 October war, in the amount of $5 millions, each Arab country to share in this sum according to its ability; and also to participate in a permanent annual fund amounting to $3 millions, each State proportionally to its share in the budget of the Arab League Secretariat.

2. To recommend to the General Secretary of the League that the measures already taken in several foreign capitals be amplified, by setting up information committees of the Arab ambassadors in foreign capitals, which would plan Arab information activity and follow up its results; it would thus be a function of the League offices everywhere to take part in the ambassadors' committee, in implementation and in financing

3. The Arab States concerned will supply the information material required to cope with events at the proper times.

f. Arab Summit Conference

Arab Summit Conferences will be held regularly every April, and special meetings if necessary, should a majority of the member States agree, and at the instance of one or more members or of the General Secretary.

g. Follow-up Mechanisms

1. The following agencies will take steps to implement the Summit resolutions as well as follow them up, according to their competences:

(a) Council of the League

(b) Economic Council

2. The Foreign Ministers will organize delegations to visit countries and international organizations under a plan which they will draw up, disseminate information about the Arab problem, clarify the Arab position, and seek support in our struggle, on the basis of the Summit resolutions.

h. Arab Relations

Fully comprehending the magnitude of the responsibility resting upon all the Arab States, and to mobilize all Arab power and potential, the Conference resolves to make every effort to cleanse the inter-Arab air and remove any differences of opinion between the Arab States.

Special Resolution

The Algiers Conference, which carried out its task in an atmosphere of brotherhood and unity, and had at its disposal all the elements of success, is happy to express its deepest thanks to the Popular Democratic Republic of Algeria, its President, its Government and people, for housing the Conference and preparing it, as well as ensuring all the conditions required for the success of its work.

It also wishes to express its thanks to the President of Algeria, Houari Boumedienne, for his sincere efforts prior to the Conference, while we were on the field of valour and sacrifice, and for the achievements attained under his wise and intelligent direction.

Presence of the Moslem Republic of Mauritania

The Conference welcomed the desire of Makhtar Walad Dauda, President of the Moslem Republic of Mauritania, to join the Arab League.

The Conference, agreeing that this should take place, wishes Mauritania continued advancement and success.

Sources: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs