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Algeria Hosts First Arab League Summit in 2 Years

    Algeria Hosts First Arab League Summit in 2 Years
    Last updated: 4 weeks ago
    Image credit: Reuters

    Facts

    • Leaders from across the Arab world met in Algeria on Tuesday for the 31st summit of the Arab League as the region battles to find common ground over a series of divisive issues amid rising inflation, energy and food shortages, and drought. [1]
    • The Palestinian cause, relations with Turkey and Iran, normalization with the Syrian government, and tensions between Algeria and Morocco are all expected to be on the agenda for the first summit since the outbreak of the COVID pandemic. [2]
    • While normalization with Israel allegedly violates the core commitments of the Arab League, a condemnation is unlikely as influential states have supported it. This summit is also set to discuss other issues, including the conflict in Yemen and Libya's political disorder. [3]
    • Several Arab leaders, however, have confirmed they aren't attending the summit, including Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, United Arab Emirates leader Mohammed bin Zayed, and Morocco’s King Mohammed VI. [4]
    • Algeria has been largely absent from Arab affairs following the 2019 mass protests that led to the ousting of Pres. Abdelaziz Bouteflika, with this meeting reportedly being used to boost diplomatic clout. Algiers recently hosted the leaders of France and Italy and several Palestinian factions. [5]
    • Meanwhile, Russia is ready to boost ties with Arab League members, with Pres. Vladimir Putin saying he was “confident that efforts to further enhance the partnership between Russia and Arab countries are in line with the common interests of the parties and the need to ensure global peace and stability.” [6]
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    Spin

    Pro-Palestine

    This Arab Summit is a great opportunity to put the Palestinian cause on center stage for the Arab world. Though some countries in the region seek to serve their own interests by normalizing with Israel, the Palestinian cause is the fundamental objective of the Arab people, and it will continue to play an essential role in the hearts and minds of Arabs across the region. The summit might not deter normalization, but at least the Arab world may be more united in confronting Israel.

    Pro-Israel

    Though the Arab League's summit may give Algeria some extra points within the Arab world, it will change little regarding the Israeli-Palestinian issue. Normalization is a reality that countries like Algeria and Syria cannot stand up against. Political unity among the governments of the Arab world simply doesn't exist, and this summit will likely not change that.

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