AU Commission Chairperson: Israeli delegation was not invited
The African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki stresses Israeli diplomats were escorted out because they weren't invited.
The African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki stressed on Monday that Israeli diplomats who were escorted out of the Addis Ababa summit's opening ceremony by security were not invited to the event.
An Israeli observer delegation at the African Union summit in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa was barred from attending the African Union's opening ceremony on Saturday.
After the summit ended on Sunday, Faki told reporters that Israeli diplomats were escorted out "because we did not invite Israeli officials."
He added that the decision to grant "Israel" observer status had been put on hold pending the outcome of a special committee's investigation into the matter.
A source in the Algerian foreign ministry told Sputnik last year that African Union leaders had decided to suspend the decision to grant "Israel" observer status, which was granted by Faki in 2021. A seven-member committee was set up that was supposed to give its recommendations on the issue at this year’s summit.
An Israeli delegation that sneaked into the African Union summit on Saturday in Addis Ababa was expelled, according to sources to Al Mayadeen.
According to media reports, the African Union Commission revoked an invitation it had previously sent to "Israel" to attend the summit's opening in response to pressure from Algeria and South Africa to bar "Tel Aviv" from participating in any summit-related activities.
In response to the incident, Israeli media reported, citing the Israeli occupation Ministry of Foreign Affairs, that the incident will be taken very seriously, claiming that the Israeli official, Sharon Bar-Lee, had all the necessary approvals to take part in the summit. "It is unfortunate to see that the African Union has been taken hostage by a small number of extremist countries such as Algeria and South Africa, driven by hatred."
Beginning in August of last year, the African Union Commission's chairperson was formally challenged by the Republic of Comoros, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and Mauritania for accepting Israeli credentials as an observer member of the organization.
A committee made up of seven heads of state, including Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, was established by the African Union last year to study the issue after the organization unanimously decided to postpone its decision to grant "Israel" observer status within the organization.
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