| 24 July 2024, Wednesday |

Where is Lebanon’s position in the Arab dialogue with Syria?

The day after tomorrow, Wednesday, the Arab Ministerial Committee emanating from the Amman meeting regarding dialogue with Syria will convene in Cairo to study many files related to the Arab relationship with Syria in light of Syria’s restoration of its seat in the League and the policy of Gulf and Arab openness to it in return for Syria’s promises to abide by Arab demands from it, especially with regard to its relations with Iran, the regime’s performance with the Syrians displaced from their country, and political reforms.

The meeting will be attended by Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Abdullah Bou Habib, because the meeting is at the level of foreign ministers.

According to Arab diplomatic sources to “Sawt Beirut International,” the topics of discussion during the meeting are three: The first: the human dimension of the Syrian crisis and the issue of the displaced Syrians.

The second: political reforms and the third, the smuggling of Captagon. And there are Lebanese consultations with the Arabs that have started from now on the agenda and the decisions that will be issued, provided that they are complemented by consultations through the Lebanese-Arab meetings in Cairo, where there is a first meeting dedicated to that, provided that a unified Lebanese-Arab position, especially on the displaced, will be presented with the Syrian side in another Arab-Syrian meeting on the same day. Of course, Lebanon will have its main position on the crisis of the displaced Syrians, its inability to bear this reality any more, and the need for Syria’s cooperation to return them to their homes.

With regard to the issue of the displaced, the sources note that the Arab position calling for their return is not compatible with the international position, which still finds that the regime’s performance does not fall into the category of facilitating the return, just as it finds that their assistance inside their country will not take place because it contributes to the reconstruction of Syria, and this is conditional on the desired political solution. However, in the matter of reforms and preventing the smuggling of Captagon, the matter is not only required in the Arab world but also internationally. Any Arab effort to achieve this will be internationally welcomed.

The sources pointed out the need for the Syrian regime to abide by the promises it made to the Arabs upon reconciliation with it, and for Syria to be embraced again by the Arabs. In this regard, there is international skepticism about its commitment to its promises, and Western countries believe that the regime has only made promises, and that the Arabs, before reconciling it, should have taken substantial steps from it in return in the outstanding issues with the regime, which did not happen. Now, there is international monitoring of the results of this meeting and the regime’s response to its decisions.

There is also an Arab concern that the Iranian retreat in its commitment to the agreement with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia may lead to a parallel Syrian retreat in its commitment to the Arabs. The coming days will reveal more about the Syrian position.


  • Sawt Beirut International