Ukraine crisis: Arab League emergency meet called by Egypt
Ukraine–Arab League is meeting on Monday to discuss rapidly escalating situation in Ukraine as Russia continues offensive on its neighbour. The session would be held at level of foreign ministers, confirmed Hossam Zaki – deputy head of the Cairo based organization.
Arab states have been presenting different stances on Russia’s invasion on Ukraine. Syria is supporting the move by Moscow while Lebanon is strongly condemning it. Egypt is expressing a broader concern on extremely volatile situation and hopes for the situation to reach a resolution quickly.
The crisis in Ukraine can have a considerable impact on Arab countries. Many of the Arab nations are heavily dependent on both Russia and Ukraine for their wheat supplies. Any shortages of the grain due to Russian invasion on Ukraine can potentially lead to a considerable unrest in region. This can directly lead to a rise in bread prices. “The Ukraine crisis could trigger renewed protests and instability” in the region, according to the Washington-based Middle East Institute.
In a Sunday statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Egypt said, “Egypt is following with deep concern the developments related to the situation in Ukraine.” The ministry reiterated importance of dialogue and diplomatic solutions to speed up diffusing of the situation so as to preserve international stability and security.
Qatari Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani expressed Qatar’s “concern over this escalation and its repercussions” and urged all parties to “exercise restraint and resolve the dispute through constructive dialogue and diplomatic means, and settle international disputes through peaceful means, and to avoid anything that would lead to further escalation.” He further emphasized “Qatar’s position on and keenness to implement the Charter of the United Nations and the established principles of international law, including the obligations under the Charter to settle international disputes by peaceful means, refrain from the threat or use of force, and abide by the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of states.”
On the other hand, Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad said in a statement: “Syria stands with Russia based on its conviction of the correctness of its position and because confronting NATO’s expansion is Russia’s right because it has become a comprehensive danger to the world.”