A four-day conference opened in Athens on Tuesday (16 May) to discuss problems of direct concern to the countries bordering the Mediterranean.
LV: delegates including PLO and Polisario representatives, poster behind in Arabic.
MS: poster of Mediterranean Socialist conference.
LS: delegates at conference.
SCU: General Secretary of organisation Ahmad El Shahati speaking in Arabic. (3 shots)
MV: delegates for Pasok and Akel (2 shots)
MV: Andreas Papandreou (leader of Greek Socialist Opposition) with delegates listening. (5 shots)
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Background: A four-day conference opened in Athens on Tuesday (16 May) to discuss problems of direct concern to the countries bordering the Mediterranean. The conference was set up by members of the main Greek opposition party and the Libyan Jamahirayah. Major topics for discussions were the present situation in Iran and the effects of the recently signed Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty.
SYNOPSIS: At he conference were about two hundred delegates from 32 political parties and liberation movements of countries bordering the mediterranean. They included representatives of the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organisation) and the Algerian-based/Polisario Front fighting for independence in the Western Sahara. The General Secretary Ahmad El Shahati welcomed the delegates. Invitations were sent throughout Western Europe and North Africa, including Egypt but not including Israel and Turkey. One major organisation represented is the Panhellenic Socialist movement.
A major speaker on the first day was Mr. Andreas Papandreou, leader of PASOK (the Panhellenic Socialist movement) which has close ties with the Arab world and especially with socialist Libya. They have a generally common approach to middle east issues. These include their attitudes towards Egypt and its bi-lateral peace treaty with Israel, a treaty which was harshly condemned by many of the visiting delegates. Iran was also expected to feature strongly on the conference agenda, with the closely-allied PLO strongly recommending approval and support for the Islamic revolutionary state.