Through the Mecca Declaration, diplomacy led by the Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz has succeeded in defusing the inter-Palestinian conflict. It succeeded when the mediator maintained a neutral position towards all parties involved in the conflict. He did not show any bias towards one party at the expense of another and did not use the summit for egoistic political goals. Hence the words of the host, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, were brief, leaving room for his guests [to talk].
What took place in Mecca was a success for the forces of moderation in the region and proof that without intervention from the forces of moderation, every conflict in our Arab world has the potential to drag the whole region towards suffering and destruction. The application of the Mecca Declaration lies in the hands of the Palestinians themselves. Saudi Arabia has fulfilled its duty and its diplomacy has achieved real success. Now, from the perspective of public opinion, any recommencing of conflict by any Palestinian party would mean a loss for this party. Above all, this party would lose the support of the forces of moderation in the region. What the Palestinians have said in Mecca, and particularly Khaled Meshaal, has become binding to them before everybody, and today neither Hamas nor Fatah have any excuses anymore. On the Saudi level, it can be said, “O God, I have informed them and you are my witness!”
As part of Mecca meetings, Azzam al Ahmad, the head of Fatah’s parliamentary block, who took part in the Palestinian government formation commission, revealed that King Abdullah had repeatedly told them, “Do not ruin us and do not ruin yourselves.”
This is the essence of truth, not only in Palestine but also in Iraq and Lebanon. All that is taking place is a waste of the energy, wealth and stability of the Arab nations. It is also a waste of their hopes for a better future and a blow to moderation that has become a long-pursued aim in a region teeming with all forms of sectarian and political strife.
Our reality today shows that as we are facing a number of thorny issues; the Israeli occupation of Arab territories, the conflict in Iraq, the bewildering bloodshed in Lebanon, a country that has experienced and knows too well the scourges of civil war, as well as Iran and America and what may unfold in the coming days. We now rejoice at inter-Palestinian reconciliation and the end of infighting instead of rejoicing at the creation of a Palestinian state and achieving Palestinian rights together.
What we are seeing today are the products of our same old crises—mishandling has resulted in our current situations. Therefore, the king’s statement is a correct and realistic one that sums up our problems. If the moderation front in the Arab world is not empowered on both the leadership and popular levels, and if those who have the capability do not act to defuse our problems and take pragmatic approaches to offering solutions, we will continue to repeat the king’s words in the ears of political and public-opinion leaders; “Do not ruin us. Do not ruin yourselves.”