The Ninth Arab Summit
Baghdad, 2-5 November 1978
On the initiative of the government of the Iraqi Republic, and at the invitation of President Ahmad Hasan al-Bakr, the ninth Arab summit conference was held in Baghdad from November 2-5, 1978.
The conference studied the situation in a lofty spirit of national responsibility and common concern for a united Arab attitude in confrontation of the perils and challenge that threaten the Arab nation, especially in the light of the developments that have resulted from the signing by the Egyptian government of the Camp David agreements, and of their effect on the Arab struggle to confront Zionist aggression against the nation.
In the light of the principles in which the Arab nation believes and of the unity of Arab destiny, and of the commitment to the traditions of joint Arab action, the conference affirmed the following basic principles:
1. The cause of Palestine is a cause involving the destiny of the Arabs; it is the essence of the conflict with the Zionist enemy, and all the peoples and countries of the Arab nation are concerned with it and committed to struggle for it and to make every sacrifice, material and moral, required by it.
The struggle for the recovery of Arab rights in Palestine and the occupied Arab territories is a general national responsibility, and it is the duty of all Arabs to participate in it, each according to his situation and to the military, economic, political and other resources at his disposal. The conflict with the Zionist enemy transcends the framework of the struggle against him on the part of the countries whose territories were occupied in 1967, and is the concern of the whole Arab nation, because the Zionist enemy is a military, political, economic and cultural danger to the whole Arab nation and to its essential national interests and to its civilization and its future. This means that all the countries of the Arab nation have a responsibility for participating in this conflict with all the resources at their disposal.
II. It is the duty of all the Arab countries to provide all kinds of aid, support and facilities to the struggle of the Palestinian resistance in all its forms through the PLO, as being the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people inside and outside the occupied territory, for the purpose of liberation and the recovery of the people's legitimate rights, including their right to return, to self-determination and to establish their independent state on the soil of their homeland. The Arab countries are committed to the maintenance of Palestinian national unity and not to interfere in the internal affairs of Palestinian action.
III. Affirmation of commitment to the resolutions of the summits, especially those of the sixth and seventh conferences, held in Algiers and Rabat.
IV. In the light of the above, one of the principles that must never be infringed or neglected is that it is inadmissible for any Arab party to take individual action to reach a solution of the Palestine problem in particular and the Arab-Zionist conflict in general.
V. No solution is acceptable unless it is accompanied by a resolution adopted by an Arab summit conference convened for that purpose.
The conference discussed the agreements signed by the Egyptian government at Camp David, and adjudged that they prejudice the rights of the Palestinian people and the rights of the Arab nation in Palestine and the occupied Arab territories, and that they were concluded outside the framework of collective Arab responsibility and conflict with the resolutions of the Arab summit conferences, especially those of Algiers and Rabat, the Charter of the Arab League and the UN resolutions on the Palestine problem, and that they cannot lead to the just peace that the Arab nation is seeking.
The conference therefore resolved not to give its approval to these agreements, to have nothing to do with their results and to reject all their political, economic, legal and other consequences.
The conference resolved to call on the government of the Arab Republic of Egypt to withdraw from these agreements and not to sign any peace treaty with the enemy. The conference hopes that the Egyptian government will return to the fold of joint Arab action and not take individual action as regards matters related to the Arab-Zionist conflict. In this connection the conference adopted a number of resolutions for the confrontation of the new stage and the protection of the goals and interests of the Arab nation, from its belief that the Arab nation, through its moral and material resources, is capable of confronting this difficult situation and all challenges just as it has done throughout history, because it is defending right and justice and its national existence.
The conference stressed the need to unify all Arab efforts so as to cope with the strategic imbalance that has resulted from Egypt's leaving. the arena of confrontation.
The conference resolved that there should be coordination between those states that are prepared and able to make an effective contribution. It also stressed the need to adhere to the regulations of the Arab boycott and the rules for the enforcement of its provisions. The conference studied means of developing Arab information directed at the outside world in such a manner as to serve the just cause of the Arabs.
The conference resolved that there should be annual meetings of the Arab summit conference in November of every year.·
Having studied the Arab and international situations, the conference affirmed the Arab nation's commitment to a just peace based on complete Israeli withdrawal from all the Arab territories occupied in 1967, including Arab Jerusalem, the safeguarding of the inalienable national rights of the Palestinian Arab people, and the establishment of their independent state on the soil of their homeland.
The conference resolved to engage in the most extensive activity at the international level with a view to explaining the just rights of the Palestinian people and the Arab nation. It expressed the sincerest gratitude and esteem for all countries that have supported the just rights of the Arabs.
The conference expressed its appreciation to the Syrian Arab Republic for the steadfastness of its valiant army and to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and its valiant army. It expressed its pride in the struggle and steadfastness of the Palestinian people inside and outside the occupied territory, under the leadership of the PLO, the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.
The conference gave its blessing to the pact of joint national recently signed by Syria and Iraq, regarding it as an important achievement on the road to Arab solidarity.
The conference also expressed the highest appreciation of the initiative of the Iraqi government under the leadership of President Ahmad Hasan al-Bakr, in calling for a meeting of the Arab summit conference in Baghdad, with a view to uniting Arab ranks and organising joint Arab efforts for the confrontation of the dangers to which the Arab nation is exposed at the present stage.
It also expressed its appreciation to President al-Bakr for the valuable efforts he made to ensure the success of the conference.
The conference took a number of decisions and measures for the confrontation of the coming stage and the defense of the goals and interests of the Arab nation, from its belief that through its moral and material resources, and on the basis of its solidarity, the Arab nation is capable of confronting difficult circumstances and all challenges, as it has done throughout history, because it is defending right and justice and its national existence.
Source: International Documents on Palestine 1978. Beirut: Institute for Palestine Studies, 1980, pp. 292-294.