Kuwait hints at breakthrough in intra-GCC ties

Talks at CFAAIR included a number of hot topics in the region such as upcoming elections in a number of Arab countries

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Kuwait’s foreign minister hinted Tuesday at an imminent end to the recent rift between Qatar and its Gulf Cooperation Council neighbors Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Sheikh Sabah Khaled al-Hamad al-Sabah, who is also Kuwait’s first deputy prime minister, noted an imminent breakthrough in inter-GCC ties, referring to Kuwaiti mediation efforts between Riyadh, the UAE and Bahrain on the one hand and the Qatar on the other.


Sabah’s comments came during an address to the Board of Trustees of the Kuwait-based Council For Arab and International Relations (CFAAIR) – an independent Arab think tank aimed at providing technical support for Arab decision markers on regional and international issues.

In early March, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain withdrew their ambassadors from Qatar after an unprecedented fall out between the GCC members.

Riyadh said the move by the trio came after Doha failed to respect a GCC deal not to support "anyone threatening the security and stability of the GCC whether as groups or individuals - via direct security work or through political influence, and not to support hostile media."

Talks at the CFAAIR meeting Tuesday included a number of hot topics in the Arab world such as a rise in terrorism and sectarian polarization that pose a threat to a number of Arab states and societies in the Middle East and North Africa region.

The members also discussed upcoming presidential polls in Egypt, Iran, Lebanon and Algeria.

They also reviewed developments in Syria as well as Arab-Iranian relations and Tehran’s foreign policy in the Middle East and the negative impact it has had in the region.

The participants agreed political support for Palestine’s refusal to bow down to Israeli pressures and practices as well as to back Palestinian efforts to join international organizations and treaties.

They also stressed the need for an end to the building of Israeli settlements and the recognition of a 2000 Arab League initiative as necessary for any resolution to the decades-old Arab-Israeli conflict.

The council also stressed its support for Palestinian national reconciliation efforts and called for ending intra-Palestinian divisions while stressing the right of Palestinians to peaceful resistance.

They also stressed the right to resort economic boycotts and sanctions on Israel until the Jewish state ends its occupation of Palestinian territories and returns the rights of Arabs.

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