"We received an invitation from the Lebanese presidential office to participate in the economic summit. It was natural to refuse," the diplomat said, adding that the refusal was dictated by the fact that "the Arab League did not fix the mistakes it had made in relation to Damascus."
The statement comes after on Saturday, Arab League's Assistant Secretary-General Hossam Zaki told Sputnik that Syria's invitation to the organization's summit in Tunisia in March would not be discussed during the Arab Economic and Social Development Summit that will take place in Beirut later this month.
The Arab League suspended Syria’s membership in 2011 after the war in the country broke out. Member states then recalled their ambassadors from the country. However, they are now making steps to re-establish diplomatic ties with Damascus.
Lebanon, which will host the League’s economic summit on January 19-20, sought last year to convince other member states to invite Syria to Beirut but the discussion was postponed until the Tunisian summit.