Jordan King holds summit meeting with Lebanese president
Written by Malek   

By Jordan Times AMMAN — His Majesty King Abdullah on Tuesday received the Lebanese President Michel Aoun, who is on a working visit to the Kingdom, a Royal Court statement said. Upon arrival, an official reception ceremony, attended by ministers and several senior officials, was held for the president at Marka Military Airport. Later in the day, the King and the president held a summit meeting at Basman Palace where they discussed ways to enhance bilateral relations, regional developments and the Syrian crisis.

His Majesty welcomed the president and stressed “the deep- rooted and historic ties” between Jordan and Lebanon, the statement said. During the meeting, attended by senior officials from both countries, the two leaders agreed to hold the meetings of the higher Jordanian-Lebanese committee as soon as possible to increase cooperation and discuss a free trade agreement. They also agreed to hold a Jordanian-Lebanese forum for investment, activate the maritime route between ports of both countries and boost cooperation in several fields such as finance, technology, industry, agriculture, and tourism, in addition to using Aqaba port facilities to re-export Lebanese products to the world, especially Africa.

King Abdullah and President Aoun also discussed cooperation in the fields of security and civil defence, and Jordan’s contribution to the Lebanese army capacity building. The discussions also covered the main regional and international issues such as the Syrian crisis, the Middle East peace process and the war on terror. They stressed the importance of addressing the crises that face some countries in the region to retrieve stability.

As for the Syrian crisis, they called for building on the international efforts to sustain the ceasefire to reach a political solution in line with Geneva understandings. They also highlighted the burdens Jordan and Lebanon have been shouldering due to the Syrian crisis’ security, economic and social repercussions.

 The two leaders stressed the importance of intensifying regional and international efforts to combat terrorism within a holistic strategy, as, they agreed, terror is a universal threat that targets the security and stability of all countries.

Institutionalising pan-Arab joint action is an efficient means to overcome challenges that face the Arab nation, the King and the president said, stressing the significance of the Arab League summit scheduled to be held in Amman next month.

For his part, Aoun expressed his country’s appreciation for Jordan’s stances in support of Lebanon and its stability, security and unity, commending His Majesty’s role in the war on terrorist groups.

The Lebanese president, who left later in the day, underlined the huge burdens on Lebanon and Jordan as a result of hosting millions of Syrian refugees, a matter which requires the international community’s support to sustain the flow of aid and services for Syrians.

His Majesty held a launch banquet in honour of the president and the accompanying delegation.