Damascus hosts ACSAD meetings
Regional, Agriculture, 5/13/1998
The 24th session of the Arab Center for Studies on Dry Areas and Arid lands (ACSAD) general assembly was opened on Monday in Damascus. Talking to the conferees, Syrian Agriculture Minister Asaad Mustafa said that Syria has placed the question of agricultural development at the top of its priorities for socioeconomic development.
On behalf of the Arab League, A.L. assistant secretary-general for economic affairs Abdul Rahman al-Sheibani stressed A.L. support for the development process in all its dimensions, stating that Arab economic integration is the fortress to counter all economic and political dangers.
He noted that the problem of the scarcity of water resources in the Arab region is very critical and has political dimensions as regards shared water resources. He went on that this problem necessitates a firm and strict stand to maintain the Arab rights along with improving the relations with neighboring countries. He explained that the A.L. called on Turkey to tackle the question of water sharing with Syria and Iraq according to international law and relevant agreements.
He pointed out that the peace process is in critical condition because of the oppressive practices pursued by the Israeli government. The Egyptian Agriculture Ministry's first undersecretary, Alaaeddine Bunduk, spoke on behalf of ACSAD general assembly. He indicated the need to liberate inter-Arab trade, set up free trade zones and cement common economic action so as to overcome the dangers facing Arab national security with its food and water parts.
Meantime, ACSAD director-general Hassan Saud asserted that the center has assumed a great task of maintianing a close relationship with the issue of agricultural development and food security in the Arab world.
Outlining ACSAD's achievements, Saud highlighted Syria's great support of the center. Arab delegations representing Jordan, Oman, Algeria, Tunisia, Iraq, Lebanon, Morocco, Sudan, Palestine Libya and Syria are taking part in the meetings.
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