Arab Foreign Ministers meeting in Egypt agreed a draft resolution Thursday to form a unified military force, in a move aimed at countering growing regional security threats.
The Arab Foreign Ministers agreed on adopting an important principle, which is forming the unified Arab military force,” Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby said after the meeting in the Egyptian resort of Sharm El-Sheikh.
“The task of the force will be rapid military intervention to deal with security threats to Arab nations,” he added.
The draft resolution will be referred to the Arab leaders during their summit which begins in Egypt today.
Egyptian TV reported earlier that the Ministers asked Elaraby to co-ordinate with Arab armies' chiefs of staff within one month to begin forming the unified force. The Arab League Chief described the resolution as “historic”.
The idea was first floated by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. The 22 Arab states often have different views on how to tackle crises and calls for a unified force in the past have failed to produce tangible results.
The dangers facing the region have perhaps never seemed starker. Conflicts are intensifying in Yemen and Libya and the civil war in Syria is entering its fifth year.
Islamic State (ISIS) militants have taken over swathes of Iraq and Syria and spawned splinter groups across the Arab world.
The US and other major powers are seeking a final nuclear deal with Iran, in a process that worries many Arab leaders wary of Iran's growing influence in the region. In a statement issued at the end of the talks, the Ministers said they support the military procedures taken by the coalition countries, made of the GCC states and a number of Arab and Islamic counties to defend the legitimate government in Yemen in response to a call by President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
The action stems from a keenness of the Arab League to secure Yemen's unity, independence and sovereignty after the GCC has done all it could to settle the crisis through peaceful means.