JIDDAH, SAUDI ARABIA, NOV. 14 -- Saudi Arabia, in its first public response to Morocco's call for an urgent Arab summit conference, said such a meeting "will bear no fruit or results" unless Iraq complies with prior Arab demands to withdraw from Kuwait.

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Faisal, breaking three days of Saudi silence on King Hassan II's plea Sunday for a "last-chance" summit to avert war, made the comment in the United Arab Emirates. His trip was part of an effort to develop a common stance toward the Moroccan proposal, a Saudi official said.

Saud's remarks came as Iraqi First Deputy Prime Minister Taha Yassin Ramadan took an opposing stance, saying that any new summit should "erase the infamous Cairo summit resolutions" against Iraq.

Ramadan, back in Baghdad after talks with Hassan in Morocco, was referring to the Aug. 10 meeting in the Egyptian capital at which 12 Arab leaders demanded an immediate, unconditional withdrawal of Iraqi troops from Kuwait, and agreed to seek foreign help -- thus endorsing Saudi Arabia's decision to call in U.S. military forces.

Saadi Mehdi Saleh, head of Iraq's National Assembly, said in Baghdad that the Arabs would not be able to "reach a just and realistic solution to the Persian Gulf crisis as long as the spears of foreigners are aimed at their chests," and claimed that recent U.S. statements indicated that even if a solution is found, American troops are there "for the destruction of Iraq."

"It is our right to be cautious," Saleh said in an interview with Washington Post correspondent Nora Boustany. "If we reach a solution and pull out of Kuwait and the threats {of war} remain, of what use will this conference be? It has to take into account how to force the Americans to leave."

Meanwhile, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak ended two days of talks with Libyan leader Col. Moammar Gadhafi and flew to Damascus to confer with Syrian President Hafez Assad.

His meetings are a follow-up to recent consultations among the foreign ministers of Egypt, Syria and Saudi Arabia that sought to lay out a common position in efforts to find a peaceful solution, Saudi and Egyptian sources have said.

The day's diplomatic activity illustrated what officials and diplomats are predicting will be weeks of secret negotiating and shuttling by Middle East politicians before this latest initiative either produces a diplomatic detour around war or withers into a pre-conflict footnote.

It is clear that, despite the obstacles, serious efforts are underway to resolve the deep Arab rift caused by Iraq's Aug. 2 invasion of Kuwait.

Although there are few public hints to go by, it appears that the first step being discussed privately involves attempts to set up a meeting between Iraq and Saudi Arabia prior to a full summit.

This scenario, outlined by a Kuwaiti source, also was mentioned by Iraqi Second Deputy Prime Minister Saadoun Hammadi today in comments to Algerian radio.

"We consider that if we want an Arab solution to be successful and useful . . . there must be first of all consultations with parties that are directly concerned, either through secret or open official talks, to reach a draft on which there is a consensus or semi-consensus," he said.

"There must be a smaller meeting to narrow differences between concerned parties," said Hammadi, who is visiting Algeria, Tunisia and Libya to discuss the Moroccan proposal. "After that, there could be a general meeting of all Arab countries to give {a draft} official status and support it morally."

An unidentified Palestine Liberation Organization official was quoted today in the London-based Palestinian daily Al Quds Al Arabi as saying efforts were being made to arrange a Saudi-Iraqi meeting that would pave the way for a summit.

Despite the search for a peaceful solution, however, several officials in Saudi Arabia and Egypt -- the two main Arab allies in the anti-Iraq coalition -- said they are convinced Iraqi President Saddam Hussein will never voluntarily leave Kuwait, and voiced pessimism that the intiative will go anywhere.

"Rubbish," said one Egyptian. "Stop looking for a peaceful settlement," said a Saudi.

Prince Saud, who carried a letter from Saudi King Fahd to the UAE ruler, Sheik Zeid Sultan Nahayyan, said the two rulers' views on the Moroccan summit call were "identical."

"Any Arab meeting will bear no fruit or results unless Iraq agrees to abide by the decisions of the Cairo Arab summit and {U.N.} resolutions, which call for Iraqi withdrawal from Kuwait," Saud said.

Iraqi has said it would attend a summit if it is consulted on the time and place, and if its occupation of Kuwait is discussed in the context of regional security issues, including Israel's occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip and parts of Lebanon and Syria.

The Saudis and Egyptians have rejected directly linking the Kuwaiti occupation to the Israeli-Palestinian issue, saying the two should be handled separately.

Also today, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati arrived in Baghdad for a two-day visit that the Iraqi News Agency said would focus on the gulf crisis and remaining issues related to a final settlement of the Iran-Iraq war, which ended in 1988. Iran has condemned Iraq's invasion of Kuwait and demanded its withdrawal, but is also critical of the U.S. military buildup in the gulf.

Boustany reported from Baghdad:

Saddam has removed his cousin, Ali Hassan Majid, as acting governor of occupied Kuwait, the state-run Al Joumhuriya newspaper said today, and appointed Aziz Saleh Nouman, a senior member of the ruling Baath Party, to replace him. Iraqi sources said, without elaborating, that authorities two days ago banned civilian travel to Kuwait, which Iraq has declared one of its provinces.

Western officials here said two elderly American residents of Baghdad have been given exit visas, apparently at the behest of former U.S. attorney general Ramsey Clark, who met Tuesday with Saddam and Iraqi judicial authorities.

Meanwhile, Western diplomats in Baghdad said more American women and children in Kuwait are expected to be evacuated soon, possibly by Sunday. The evacuation, which is expected to include Britons and Canadians, would be the first since Oct. 10.