Kingdom, Egypt call for Iraq unity govt

CAIRO: Saudi Arabia and Egypt emphasized Wednesday the need to establish a unity government in Iraq, representing all groups and parties and ensuring them equal rights and responsibilities.“Our two countries are providing advice and consultancy in order to resolve the present crisis in Iraq,” Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal told reporters after talks with President Hosni Mubarak.Prince Saud, according to the Saudi Press Agency, conveyed a message from Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah to Mubarak relating to the present Arab situation.“My meeting with President Mubarak reflected the unity of opinion the two countries have on various issues such as Palestine, Iraq and Sudan as well as other issues concerning the Arab world,” he said.“I have listened to the president’s opinion on various issues and I will convey them to King Abdullah within the framework of our mutual consultation,” he said.

Asked about the current visit of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Lebanon, Prince Saud said he wanted to see the visit’s impact on Lebanese peace. The Iranian president had telephoned King Abdullah before his visit to Beirut. According to SPA, the two leaders “discussed bilateral relations and reviewed the overall situation in the region.”Prince Saud said his talks with Mubarak also covered the upcoming referendum on the division of Sudan. “The issue is being studied by the two governments and other Arab countries with Sudan,” he said.The foreign minister told an Arab League emergency summit in Libya that the referendum should be conducted in a fair and transparent manner and without any pressure.“Sudan, a member of the Arab League, is facing the threat of division. No Arab League member can justify its neutral stand on the issue. We have to support Sudan to overcome these dangers,” Prince Saud told the summit.Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit said King Abdullah’s message to Mubarak contained a number of issues, most importantly the present crisis in Iraq over the formation of government. He said the two countries would continue their consultations to coordinate stances on various issues – Arabnews