GCC's unity, solidarity still intact, says Kuwaiti FM
December 05 2017 12:53 AM
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani attending
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani attending the meeting of the GCC foreign ministers in Kuwait City yesterday.

Agencies/Kuwait City


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His Highness the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani leaves Doha today for Kuwait to lead Qatar's delegation to the 38th session of the Supreme Council of Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC).
The GCC summit is scheduled to be held in Kuwait City today and tomorrow.
The GCC Ministerial Council concluded its 144th session yesterday in preparation for the summit.
Qatar's delegation to the ministerial meeting was led by HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani.
Delivering his opening speech at the meeting, Kuwait's First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled al-Hamad al-Sabah welcomed the participants, saying that their presence would contribute to the success of the summit.
He affirmed the GCC's unity and solidarity are still intact, standing against various kinds of challenges and trials over the years.
The Kuwaiti minister stressed the importance of the current summit, noting that it would contribute to the continuation of the council's success.
"The Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah and his fellow GCC leaders are hopeful that the summit will continue to be the venue that serves the people of the region and carries on the rapid development of GCC nations," said Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled.
The Kuwaiti foreign minister hoped that the current summit would meet the aspirations and dreams of the people in the region.
GCC Secretary-General Abdullatif al-Zayyani told the meeting that the region's difficulties coupled with security and political challenges required members to consolidate solidarity and unity.
He called for the maintenance of strategic ties between the member-states while describing the ministerial meeting as one of the successes of the summit.
Besides the Qatari and Kuwaiti foreign ministers, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir, UAE State Minister for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash, Bahrain's Assistant Foreign Minister Abdullah al-Dossari and Oman's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Yussef bin Alawi attended.
Later, Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled received a phone call from US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
"Discussions over phone dealt with relations between the two countries and means of enhancing them as well as the latest developments on the regional and international arenas," Kuwaiti news agency KUNA reported.
Qatar's foreign minister, previously said he hoped the GCC summit would provide a blueprint for ending the regional dispute.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, all GCC members, as well as Egypt on June 5 severed all political and economic relations with Qatar.
They accused Doha of backing extremist groups, a charge it denied. There have been no contacts between the two sides since then.
Founded in 1981, the GCC is a political and economic union grouping Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE and Qatar, as well as Oman and Kuwait.
It was not known if the leaders at the summit will discuss the worst political dispute in the GCC's 36-year history.
Mediation efforts led by Kuwait have failed to resolve the crisis.
Kuwaiti political analyst Saleh al-Saeedi said: "Kuwait hopes to at least freeze the dispute, stop its deterioration and move on to the next step".
After cutting off all ties, Saudi Arabia and its allies imposed a land, sea and air blockade on Qatar and issued a list of 13 demands to have it lifted.
Qatar's stock market jumped by its biggest margin in nearly five months yesterday because of hopes that Doha's diplomatic dispute with four other Arab countries will be resolved. Investors hope Sheikh Tamim's attendance will be a step towards renewed dialogue with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt.
Al Jazeera's Jamal Elshayyal, reporting from Kuwait City, said the leaders of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain find themselves in a "difficult situation".
"On one hand, if they attend, it'll be taken as a sign of weakness by their people after months of accusing Qatar of 'terrorism', and saying that Qatar should be ostracised," he said.
"However, if they don't attend, they will be accused of sowing disunity among the GCC and standing in the way of Kuwait's efforts to bring everyone to the table."



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