AMN / WEB DESK
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will be among international leaders to participate in the Cairo summit for peace on Saturday, according to media reports.
Egypt’s leader Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has invited leaders for a peace summit in Cairo on Saturday with the aim to to avert the Gaza crisis from escalating into a broader regional war, but his key problem is the all-important trio who won’t be there: the U.S., Israel and Iran.
Leaders of a dozen countries, including top officials from Turkey, Qatar and Europe, are converging on Egypt for the conference, but the absence of the big three at the heart of the conflict makes it highly unlikely the summit can pull anything out of the hat.
Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and Kuwait’s Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah also confirmed their presence in Cairo.
French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna, European Council President Charles Michel and EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell have confirmed their presence in the meeting, which will discuss the Palestinian-Israeli issue, according to reports.
Colonna had already travelled to Cairo, Beirut and Israel last week as Paris looks to reduce the risk of an escalation across the region.
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni will also participate in the peace summit, government sources told Reuters.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa confirmed his attendance to discuss the conflict in Israel and the Gaza Strip, his office said.
“President Ramaphosa has been deeply concerned by attacks on civilians, the resulting enormous loss of life, displacement of people and the humanitarian crisis that has engulfed the Gaza Strip,” South Africa’s presidency said in a statement on Friday.
“South Africa stands ready to join the global effort that will bring about lasting peace to the Middle East.”
The other attendees expected so far are Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, Japanese Foreign Minister Yoko Kamikawa and British foreign minister James Cleverly.
Israel has intensified its bombardment on Gaza over the two weeks, killing at least 3,800 people and wounding more than 13,000. Calls for peace have intensified as Gaza prepares to receive long-awaited aid after an agreement to open the Rafah border crossing.