His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah said Tuesday Riyadh Declaration is “the gateway to our future”.
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Speaking during the concluding session of the 40th version of the GCC summit in Riyadh, His Highness the Amir hoped that the coming meetings would be better than previous ones.
His Highness the Amir thanked Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and the Saudi government for the declaration and sponsorship of this gathering. The 40th GCC summit concluded here Tuesday with Secretary-General Abdulatif Al-Zayani reading the ‘Riyadh Declaration’.
It emphasized necessity to protect maritime of the Arabian Gulf from any threats, as the Council notes measures taken by Saudi Arabia to protect its oil facilities,
which stems from the Kingdom’s keenness of a stable oil market, both for producing and consuming countries.
“Any aggression on a GCC Member State is an aggression on all Member States,” the Declaration stressed. It also underlined the importance of achieving economic unity and customs integration, which would serve the Gulf’s political and security coordination in light of regional and international variables.
The vision of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, laid the foundations for the integration system among GCC countries in all fields, which requires completion of procedures needed to guarantee intactness of Member States sovereignty and safety of its territorial waters, as well as economic areas in accordance with the joint defense treaty, the Declaration pointed out.
The summit discussed a host of important issues of interest for the GCC march, in addition to reports and recommendations forwarded by the ministerial committees and action teams with regard to political, economic, social and legal aspects. It will also review a number of current regional and international issues and regional developments. His Highness the Amir voiced satisfaction with the positive and constructive steps taken so far in the context of efforts to forget the past. Addressing the GCC gathering in Riyadh, His Highness the Amir said that the 40th GCC session, held in a favorable atmosphere, reflects resolve to adopt unified positions and commitment to Gulf unity.
He voiced optimism that Tuesday’s meeting would come up with resolutions and recommendations that could undoubtedly contribute to promoting the Gulf march and fulfilling the ambitions. He stressed that the recent Gulf sports event in Qatar and Tuesday’s event are clear-cut signs of common determination to ensure Gulf unity and maintain gains and accomplishments. In this context, His Highness the Amir congratulated Bahrain on winning the 24th Gulf Cup, wishing it more progress and success.
His Highness the Amir added that he has always called for addressing recent threats to regional security and stability in a calm and wise mode and through dialogue. “Due to this escalation, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been hit by dreadful attacks which we condemned and denounced. We have also voiced support to our brothers in defending their security and stability,” he said. He cited Saudi Arabia’s G20 presidency, the UAE’s hosting of Expo 2020 and Qatar’s organizing of the World Cup 2022 as a source of pride to the Gulf people, and a sign of world appreciation to and confidence in the GCC countries.
At the Arab level, His Highness the Amir said:
“We took note of the agreement signed by the Yemeni government and Transitional Council under the sponsorship and with the praiseworthy effort of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.” He hailed the Riyadh agreement as a gateway to the aspired peace process in Yemen. Concerning Iraq, Lebanon, Libya and Algeria, His Highness the Amir hoped that they would overcome their current difficult and painful circumstances and restore security and stability. He also congratulated the Tunisian people on their recent successful presidential elections, voicing heartfelt greetings to President Kais Saied. His Highness the Amir concluded his speech by thanking the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for organizing the gathering and for proper reception and hospitality. Kuwaiti Nayef Al-Hajraf has been confirmed as the incoming GCC Secretary-General earlier Tuesday, he is the second Kuwaiti to take the post since the bloc’s inception in 1981.
Al-Hajraf has a vast experience in public and private sector management, education, and financial consulting. Prior to his appointment, he served as Kuwait’s chief regulator of marketable securities in his capacity as the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners and Managing Director of the Kuwait Capital Markets Authority (CMA) from 2014 to 2017.
He has previously served as Kuwait Minister of Finance for a brief period in 2012, and Minister of Education and Minister of Higher Education from 2012 to 2014. His most recent Cabinet post was also as Finance Minister from November 2017 until his resignation in November 2019. Al-Hajraf holds a PhD in Accounting and Finance from the University of Hull, UK and a Master’s in Accounting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, as well as a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Kuwait University.
The GCC leaders have lauded devoted efforts of His Highness the Amir to mend the Gulf rift, Secretary General Abdulatif A-Zayani said Tuesday. His remarks came during a joint press conference with Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal Bin Farhan at the conclusion of the 40th Gulf summit here; as he added that, “the Supreme Council expressed support for those efforts and the significance for them to continue,” a statement echoed by the Saudi top diplomat, who added that the “four countries” do support His Highness the Amir’s efforts in this regard. Al-Zayani voiced the GCC’s keenness on unity among its members, with the mutual goal of achieving more coordination and collaboration on all levels.
He pointed to the Supreme Council leaders’ affirmation of the necessity of implementing all decisions and agreements concluded within the framework of the GCC and commitment to its contents, indicating that the Supreme Council expressed satisfaction over progress made in implementing the vision of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman Bin Abdulaziz to enhance Gulf joint action.
Al-Zayani also noted that the Supreme Council adopted the recommendations of the Joint Defense Council at its 16th session, blessing the establishment of the Gulf Academy for Defense and Security Studies and the adoption of its financial budget, as well as welcoming the opening of the official headquarters of the International Alliance for the Protection and the Safety of Maritime Navigation and ensuring the safety of sea routes, in the Kingdom of Bahrain in November 2019; confirming enhanced security and protection of maritime navigation in the Strait of Hormuz, the Sea of Oman and Bab Al-Mandab Strait.
The Council also adopted the recommendations of the interior ministers at their 36th meeting, and blessed the holding of the joint security exercise ‘Arab Gulf Security 2’ in the UAE, next year, he said.
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