MANAMA – Wrapping up its 37th session here on Wednesday, the Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) totally rejected Iran’s intervention in the internal affairs of the Gulf states and the region.
“Iran must change its policy of harboring the terrorist groups, including Hezbollah, supporting terrorist militias and triggering sectarian strife in the region,” the Gulf leaders said in the final communique adopted by the summit.
While denouncing Iran’s attempts to politicize Haj and misuse it for offending Saudi Arabia, the summit urged Iran to lend a hand of cooperation to the Saudi authorities for the smooth operation of Haj.
The Gulf leaders also condemned missile attack by Houthi-Saleh militias targeting the holy city of Makkah.
The Supreme Council called on the UN Security Council to make an urgent intervention to stop bloodshed in Syria. In the wake of the ongoing bloodletting and atrocities that amount to war crimes, the summit called for an emergency session of the UN General Assembly to stop the continuing killing spree in flagrant violation of the international laws and UN resolutions.
The Gulf leaders congratulated Donald Trump on winning the US presidential election, and looked forward to enhancing historic and strategic relations between the US and the region, wishing the US people steady progress and prosperity under the new president’s leadership.
The Gulf Summit reviewed the progress of implementing the vision of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman to complete a transition that will see an integrated GCC. “The Supreme Council has reviewed work in implementing King Salman’s vision unveiled in the previous session of the Supreme Council to consolidate joint Gulf efforts to move from the phase of cooperation to the phase of union and to implement more of joint efforts in defense, security and commerce.”
The summit reviewed the progress of economic and developmental integration among the GCC countries. It approved the exchange of credit information among the GCC states and endorsed building the linkage of payment systems of the GCC countries and accordingly authorized the Gulf monetary agencies and central banks to possess, run and finance the project through establishing an independent company.
The council approved the law on combating commercial fraud in the GCC countries as a mandatory system. The leaders underscored the significance of implementing the ambitious GCC Railway project and decided to transfer the matter to the newly constituted Economic and Developmental Affairs Authority in order to forge the necessary mechanism to complete the project as prescribed and as per the vision of King Salman. The next session of the Supreme Council will be held in Kuwait.
In a related development, Bahrain’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Khalid Bin Ahmed Al-Khalifa reiterated the GCC support to the legitimate government in Yemen. “The allied countries in support of Yemen answered the call of the legitimate government without siding with any party to the detriment of another”, he said while addressing a press conference marking the conclusion of the GCC summit. He said that the alliance opposes any external interference and any harm to Yemen and neighboring countries and their vital interests. GCC Secretary General Dr. Abdullatif Al-Zayani was also present at the press conference.
The minister urged an end to the Iranian shipments of arms and to the blatant interference which claims the lives of Yemenis as citizens from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. “We have intervened in Yemen only to restore stability in this country with all its segments”, he said.