Foreign Minister chairs 147th session of GCC Ministerial Council in Riyadh
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, chairman of the current session, chaired the 147th session of the GCC Ministerial Council. The meeting was held today in Prince Saud Al Faisal Conference Center at the headquarters of the General Secretariat of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It was attended by the Foreign Ministers of GCC countries and the Secretary General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Dr. Nayef Falah Al-Hajraf.
In his statement, Dr. Al-Zayani lauded Al-Ula summit and its outcomes, hailing the leaders of GCC countries and their keenness to keep the Council’s process on track.
He condemned the recent terrorist attacks on Saudi Arabia by Houthi militias, praising the high efficiency and vigilance of the Royal Saudi Air Force and the Coalition Forces to support legitimacy in Yemen in countering all these heinous attacks.
The Foreign Minister added that these attacks were denounced by GCC countries and all countries of the world, as they all expressed support for Saudi Arabia and the actions it takes to preserve its security and sovereignty.
He also reiterated the Council’s position that adheres to safeguarding Arab national security and rejects all foreign interference in GCC and Arab countries internal affairs, and also calls to end the Houthi coup against the legitimate authority in Yemen. He noted that the Cooperation Council wholeheartedly seeks to end all painful conflicts in Arab countries in order for peace and security to prevail in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Somalia.
The Ministerial Council discussed a number of reports submitted by the General Secretariat regarding the promotion of joint Gulf action, and the follow-up of the process of economic and development integration among GCC countries. It also discussed strengthening cooperation among member states in order to implement the decisions of the Supreme Council regarding ending the requirements for completing the customs union and the Gulf Common Market, in order to achieve its economic unity by 2025.
At the conclusion of the meeting, Dr. Al-Hajraf read the statement issued by the meeting, as the Ministerial Council condemned the recent terrorist attacks on Saudi Arabia, and expressed support for all the actions it takes to counter these attacks.
The Ministerial Council affirmed all that was included in the final statement, Al-Ula statement, and Al-Ula declaration issued by the 41st session of the Supreme Council that took place in Al-Ula, stressing that the security of the Gulf Cooperation Council states is indivisible.
The Ministerial Council stressed the importance of Gulf integration and collective interaction in the post-pandemic phase, especially in the areas of food security, demographics, employment and education.
It also expressed its appreciation for the continuous efforts made by the armed forces GCC countries in coordination with the General Secretariat of the Cooperation Council to implement all decisions related to joint Gulf military action.
The Council expressed its appreciation for the continuous efforts made by health authorities in the GCC countries to deal with the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19), stressing the importance of continued coordination, exchanging experiences and promoting social benefit, and appreciating at the same time the cooperation of the citizens and their effective contributions in supporting the efforts of health authorities in GCC countries.
The Ministerial Council affirmed the firm positions and decisions of the Cooperation Council rejecting Iran's continued occupation of the three islands of the United Arab Emirates (Greater Tunb, Lesser Tunb, and Abu Musa), stressing support for UAE's sovereignty over its three islands, its territorial waters, airspace, continental shelf and exclusive economic zone.
The Ministerial Council also emphasized the positions of the Cooperation Council and its firm decisions regarding relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran, and stressed the need for any future negotiations with Iran to include addressing Iran's destabilizing behaviour for the security and stability of the region and the world, its sponsorship of terrorism, and the Iranian missile program.
It condemned Iran's continued support of terrorist groups and sectarian militias that threaten Arab national security and destabilize Arab countries.
The Council stated its support for the efforts of legitimacy in Yemen, represented by President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, and his government, to end the Yemeni crisis and reach a political solution, in accordance with the Gulf initiative and its implementation mechanism, the outcomes of the Comprehensive National Dialogue Conference, and Security Council Resolution No. 2216, expressing its support for the efforts of the United Nations and its special envoy to Yemen, and the US special envoy to Yemen, to cease fire and reach a political solution according to aforementioned references.
It also condemned the Iran-backed Houthis militia attacks on Yemen.
The Ministerial Council also reviewed the strategic partnerships between the Cooperation Council and other states and groups, in addition to the latest developments on the regional and international arenas, including: the Yemeni crisis, the Palestinian issue, Iraq, Syria and Libya.