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Arab leaders to discuss 24 dossiers in Baghdad summit: report


14:12, March 06, 2012

BAGHDAD, March 5 (Xinhua) -- The Arab leaders will discuss 24 dossiers in the coming Baghdad summit slated for March 29, an Iraqi official newspaper reported on Monday.

"There will be 24 dossiers on the table of the Arab leaders in Baghdad summit, including providing support to countries of the Arab protests (Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen), Palestine, fighting terrorism and violence, situation in Somalia and Sudan, the United Arab Emirates' (UAE) islands in the Gulf, the water file and economic cooperation," the state-run newspaper of al- Sabah quoted unnamed Arab source as saying.

"The Arab leaders will also discuss a plan proposed by Iraq aimed at resolving the Syrian crisis to spare the country the risk of slipping into civil war," the source said.

In addition, the Arab leaders will welcome the U.S. withdrawal from Iraq and are expected to recommend bringing an end to the UN sanctions (known as "Chapter 7" sanctions) imposed on Iraq after its invasion to Kuwait in 1990, the paper said.

The newspaper also confirmed that the Arab League (AL) began to prepare the agenda of Baghdad summit, citing the Arab source as saying that "the preparations of the agenda for Baghdad summit have started and will include remarks submitted by Iraq as the host country in addition to suggestions by other countries."

Late last month, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said in an interview with Saudi newspaper Aukadh that he backs change through free elections in neighboring Syria as a necessary means for stability.

Maliki said that Syrians "must receive enough freedoms and form a national unity government at the first stage."

"Free elections should be held under UN and Arab supervision, as well as electing a national council which will write a constitution," Maliki added.

Iraq refused to support punitive measures by the Arab League against Syria which its President Bashar al-Assad is carrying out crackdown against the opposition.

However, Iraqi officials earlier said that their government attitude toward Syria is to hammer out peaceful solutions for the Syrian crisis that may preserve the aspirations of Syrian people to carry out democratic change away from external interference and sectarianism.

Iraq's Shiite-dominated government has close ties with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who is a member of the Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam.


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