Middle East Intelligence Bulletin
Jointly published by the United States Committee for a Free Lebanon and the Middle East Forum
  Vol. 2   No. 10 Table of Contents
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November 2000 

Document File Document File: Lebanon

Lebanese President Emile Lahoud: Address to the Arab Summit in Cairo

21 October 2000

Translation from the original Arabic by The Daily Star

I begin my brief and unprepared speech by thanking President Mubarak for giving me the opportunity to speak in the opening session.

Lebanon suffered tremendously from the Israeli occupation and paid a high price. But the Lebanese people, after having rallied around their strong state, managed to realize the greatest achievement in their modern history, liberating their land from Israeli occupation. "I am certain that, when Arab countries take a unified stand to liberate all occupied Arab territories and ensure the Palestinian people's right of return to their land, Arab countries will succeed.

In Lebanon, we suffered harshly for 20 years of Israeli occupation and its practices. Today, we know what the Palestinian people are suffering and what aggressions and troubles they endure. But we also know that unless Arab leaders are up to the responsibilities that their people charge them with, relations between the people and their leaders will be shaken.

That is why we should have a united and firm stand concerning the events in Palestine and face the crisis with the responsibility imposed by this sensitive stage.

I urge you to take bold decisions capable of solving the continuing tragedy in Palestine. We can say to our peoples that we are with them on the way to liberation and comprehensive and permanent peace.

I also say from this lofty Arab forum that some Arab territories are still occupied. Consequently, peace cannot be achieved unless all lands are liberated. The quicker we take bold decisions, the quicker we achieve peace.

Mr. President, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to deliver this speech, which springs from my conscience. I say to you and to Arab leaders that Lebanon feels today, as always, united in solidarity with you and committed to a unified Arab decision, which we hope will achieve everything that we wish.

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