Hasnt disagreed with Saudi peace plan, but… Government stance unclear [Archives:2002/11/Front Page]

March 11 2002

The Yemeni public is anxiously waiting for the formal response of the Yemeni government to the Saudi Arabian plan for peace in the Middle East, recently presented by Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Aal-Saud.
Its hoped the plan, still not fully released, will see peace made with Israel if it withdraws from Arab lands it occupied in 1967, and if it abides by all UN resolutions related to the occupation of the occupied lands.
At press time, the formal Yemeni stance towards the plan remained unclear, yet initial indications show the Yemeni government and leadership will not object to it.
Yemen is thus already being seen by observers as a supporter of the initiative.
An editorial published in the official daily newspaper Al-Thawra has praised the plan and hailed the Crown Prince for the initiative.
Some Yemeni opposition parties have objected to the plan, including the Nasserite party, whose mouthpiece, Al-Wahdawi, has expressed reservations. Most of the media organs that represented other parties, including the ruling party, General Peoples Congress have not expressed any opinion.
Its expected the formal position of Yemen will be clearer in the times to come, especially as the plan will be presented to the upcoming Arab summit to be held at the end of this month in Beirut.
It is worth noting that most Islamic and Arab nations have formally and informally supported the plan, except Libya, whose leader Muammar Al-Qaddafi criticized it and considered recognizing and normalizing with Israel unacceptable under any circumstances.
In the meantime, the European Union urged Arab rulers on Friday to accept the Saudi plan offering Arab recognition of Israel in return for its withdrawal from Arab land seized in the 1967 Middle East war.
The appeal was made by European Union Middle East peace envoy Miguel Angel Moratinos in talks with Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri of Lebanon, which is hosting the March 27-28 summit in Beirut.
The Yemeni governments stance concerning the plan will be of vital importance regarding Yemeni-Saudi relations, and also in terms of the future of the Middle East struggle.