Montenegro Eyes Guest Seat in Arab League

In the next few weeks Montenegro will submit a formal request procedure to gain "permanent guest status" in the organisation.  

Gordana Jovanovic, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs told Balkan Insight that the main reason for the special status is to improve diplomatic and economic relations with the Arab countries.
"The guests status is not bringing any additional financially or politically commitments, this status only opens up many possibilities, " Jovanovic said.

She said that the consideration and decision on the Montenegro's application is expected in September of 2014.

The ministry explained that the Arab League is one of the most important regional organizations in the wider Mediterranean region and "an international entity with which Montenegro has a special interest in establishing dialogue and contacts".

The Arab League is an intergovernmental organization comprising 22 African and Middle Eastern states whose peoples are mainly Arabic speaking.

Montenegro might sound an unusual candidate for such an organisation, which defines one of its aims as «safeguarding the interests and fostering the protection of Muslims».

However, the Foreign Ministry says that guest status would "enhance the international recognition of Montenegro in the Arab world, in particular through the implementation of bilateral contacts with member states of the Mediterranean region".

Montenegro has yet to decided whether to accredit a resident or non-resident diplomatic representative to the League.

Founded in Cairo in 1945 by Egypt, Iraq, Jordan and Yemen, other non-Arabic, non-Muslim «observers» include Brazil, India and Venezuela.Turkey gained the status of a permanent guest in...

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