At the joint Arab-Islamic Extraordinary Summit on Gaza in Riyadh

Remarks by His Majesty King Abdullah II

At the joint Arab-Islamic Extraordinary Summit on Gaza in Riyadh

Saudi ArabiaRiyadh
11 November 2023
(Translated from Arabic)


In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful,

Prayers and peace be upon our Prophet Mohammad,

Your Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud,

Your Highnesses, Excellencies, distinguished guests,

Peace, God’s mercy and blessings be upon you.

I would like to thank my brother, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, for hosting this Arab-Islamic summit in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

We convene today for Gaza and its people, as they continue to face death and destruction in an ugly war that must stop immediately, or our region will spiral into a major conflict whose price innocent people from both sides will pay, and whose repercussions will affect the whole world.

This injustice did not begin a month ago. It is a continuation of over seven decades dominated by a fortress mentality of separation walls and violations against holy sites and rights, the majority of whose victims are innocent civilians.

It is the same mentality that seeks to turn Gaza into an unliveable place. It targets mosques, churches, and hospitals; it kills doctors, paramedics, and relief workers; even children, the elderly, and women.

And I ask today, did the world have to wait for this painful humanitarian tragedy and the terrible destruction to unfold in order to realise that just peace, which fulfils the legitimate rights of the Palestinians on the basis of the two-state solution, is the only way to reach stability and end the killing and violence which have continued for decades?

My brothers,

The injustice inflicted on our Palestinian brothers and sisters reflects the international community’s failure to grant them justice and guarantee their rights to dignity, self-determination, and the establishment of their independent state on the 4 June 1967 lines, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

We cannot be silent over the catastrophic situation in the Gaza Strip, which suffocates life and prevents the delivery of medicines. Humanitarian corridors must be kept safe and sustainable. And banning the delivery of food, medicine, water, and electricity to Gazans is not acceptable. It is a war crime that the world must condemn.

Jordan will continue to undertake its duty in dispatching humanitarian aid to the Palestinians through any means available.

My brothers,

The United Nations General Assembly’s decision on Gaza was a victory for humanitarian values and for the right to life and peace. It was a worldwide rejection of the war, and a result of joint Arab action.

This decision must be our first step to work collectively to build a political alliance to first stop the war and the displacement immediately, and to launch a serious peace process in the Middle East, without allowing its hindrance under any circumstances. The alternative would be further extremism, hatred, and tragedies.

The values of Islam, Christianity, Judaism, and our shared humanity do not accept the killing of civilians nor the brutality that has been evident to the entire world over the past weeks of killing and destruction. We cannot allow for our just and legitimate cause to be turned into a source of fomenting conflict between religions.

And we say to the entire world and to all believers in peace and human dignity—regardless of their religion, ethnicity, or language—that the world will pay the price of failure to resolve the Palestinian issue and address the root causes of the problem.

Thank you all, and peace, God’s mercy and blessings be upon you.