- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 6, 2003

DOHA, Qatar (AP) Iraq's vice president shouted "Shut up, you monkey" at a Kuwaiti diplomat yesterday during an emergency summit of Islamic nations that sought but failed to develop a new position on preventing a U.S.-led war against Iraq.
At the end of the day, divisions remained too strong and delegates to the 57-member Organization of the Islamic Conference summit broke up with a final statement welcoming Iraqi cooperation with weapons inspectors from the United Nations and expressing hope that it would continue.
They rejected war against Iraq and urged Islamic countries to abstain from participating in military action against it or any other Muslim nation.
Earlier, Sheik Mohammed Sabah Al Salem Al Sabah, the Kuwaiti minister of state for foreign affairs, interrupted Iraqi Vice President Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri's speech to the summit with an inaudible remark. Mr. al-Douri responded his remarks aired live by Arab satellite television stations with "Shut up you monkey. Curse be upon your mustache, you traitor." The Arabic word for mustache sounds almost identical to the word for honor and was widely interpreted that way.
He derided the Kuwaiti minister, saying, "Today, you see how in all swaggering and rudeness, he … threatens Iraq's security at the core and calls on American troops to amass in his land."
The summit's host, Qatari emir Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, admonished Mr. al-Douri, telling him: "You started your speech with a verse from the Koran saying, 'Thou shalt be united by the word of God.'" The emir then moved on to the next speaker from Afghanistan saying, "We are not here for such exchanges."
Sheik Hamad also tried to shift the summit focus back to its lofty goal of unity, closing the session by saying: "We are eager to make this summit a success … and the proof is that you are all here with the aim of sparing the region any action that will destabilize the security and peace."
Calls for Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to quit power and go into exile have grown stronger among fellow Arabs.
The United Arab Emirates proposed at an Arab League summit in Egypt on Saturday that Saddam step down, an idea favored by Gulf countries and openly advocated by Kuwait, where there is no fondness for the regime that invaded the country in 1990 and occupied it until the 1991 Persian Gulf war.

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