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Arab summit without leader

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Beirut will host the Arab economic summit on Sunday between the absence of most Arab leaders.

The summit will discuss draft resolutions prepared by foreign ministers on 29 agenda points to support intra-regional investments, particularly in the host countries of Syrian refugees, and to accelerate the creation of the Arab Customs Union .

League of Arab States

League of Arab States

On the presidential level, only the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz and Lebanese President Michel Aoun will be present as guests. Damascus, where the Arab League suspended its membership in 2011, will be absent.

A number of presidents have apologized in recent days for assisting without clear explanations, recently the Tunisian and Somali presidents.

A number of Arab officials, including the Mauritanian president, as well as senior officials, including Palestinian Prime Minister Rami al-Hamdallah and Egyptian Deputy Prime Minister for international relations and cooperation Asaad Ben Tariq arrived in Beirut on Saturday .

The foreign ministers and the Arab economy held a preliminary meeting on Friday to discuss the agenda of the summit and prepare the motions for resolutions on 29 points.

Among the draft resolutions presented there is the invitation of the international community to support the Arab countries hosting Syrian refugees and the General Secretariat of the League of Arab States will be invited to convene a meeting of international donors and interested international organizations.

One of the topics discussed at the Sunday summit amid the divisions between the countries concerned about its formulation is to encourage the voluntary return of Syrian refugees to areas where fighting has stopped.

The draft resolution also includes an invitation to Member States, financial institutions and donors to "provide technical and material support to the Republic of Yemen" that contributes to reconstruction.

Regarding the Arab Customs Union, which was to be set up in 2015 after being discussed in previous sessions, the most recent in Riyadh in 2013, one of the draft resolutions calls on the Arab countries to speed up the completion of the requirements for the its institution.

The preparations for the summit were obscured during the last discussion on the possibility of inviting Syria to participate.

Map of Arab states

Map of Arab states

Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil called on Friday for Arab ministers to return Syria to the Arab League.

The secretary general of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit said today that the return of Syria to the university is awaiting the "Arab consensus".

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