RIYADH: The leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states yesterday concluded their 15th Consultative Meeting under the chairmanship of King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud of Saudi Arabia. Representing His Majesty Sultan Qaboos, His Highness Sayyid Shihab bin Tareq al Said led the Sultanate’s delegation at the meeting, which was also attended by French President Francois Hollande. The GCC leaders welcomed King Salman, remembering with pride efforts and initiatives launched by late King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud, appealing to the Almighty to bestow His mercy on his soul.
The leaders welcomed the participation of Hollande in the consultative meeting, lauding the coordination and cooperation among the GCC countries and France and their identical visions regarding various issues in the region and world. The GCC leaders also looked forward to their meeting with US President Barack Obama on May 13-14 in the United States, wishing that the talks will contribute in strengthening close relations with the US in light of current developments and events, and to enhance the security and stability of the region.
During the meeting, the leaders reviewed latest developments in Yemen, lauding the objectives and outcomes of the Operation Determination Storm and start of Operation Renewal of Hope in response to the request made by Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi to strengthen the legitimacy and resume political process in accordance with the GCC initiative and its executive mechanism, output of the National Comprehensive Dialogue and the Security Council’s relevant resolutions.
The leaders praised the Security Council resolution No 2216 on Yemen and welcomed the decision of the United Nations secretary-general to appoint Ismail Ould Shaikh Ahmed as new United Nations envoy to Yemen. The leaders welcomed the decision of President Hadi to hold a conference under the umbrella of the General Secretariat of the Gulf Cooperation Council in Riyadh on May 17, with the participation of all Yemeni parties and others supporting the legitimacy and Yemen’s security and stability.
The GCC leaders called for urgent measures to be taken by the Yemeni government to address the difficult and dangerous humanitarian situation caused by the war. In this context, they lauded the generous support by Saudi Arabia for Yemen as well as the humanitarian aid provided by the GCC countries. They called upon international community to accelerate providing more humanitarian aid to Yemen.
The GCC leaders welcomed Saudi Arabia’s decision in coordination with the coalition countries, within the framework of continuation of enhancing its positive humanitarian efforts inside the Yemeni territory regarding creation of safe havens at specific times for distributing humanitarian aid which comes in line with Security Council resolution No 2216 with emphasis on not being exploited by militias and their allies to achieve gains on the ground, otherwise it will lead to resumption of air operations over these areas.
In order to quick delivery of aid to the Yemeni people, the GCC leaders welcomed the Saudi’s decision regarding establishment of a unified centre in Riyadh aiming to coordinate all efforts to provide assistance between the United Nations and relevant humanitarian organisations as well as the states wishing to provide assistance to the Yemeni people, including enabling the United Nations to deliver aid ordered by King Salman.
Regarding the Palestinian cause, the GCC leaders affirmed that a comprehensive, just and lasting peace cannot be achieved without the full withdrawal of Israel from all Arab territories occupied in 1967 and establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Al Quds as its capital in accordance with the resolutions of international legitimacy and the Arab peace initiative.
As far as Syrian crisis is concerned, the GCC leaders expressed deep concern over the continuing deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Syria. They called for a political solution to the Syrian crisis in accordance with Geneva 1 Statement in order to ensure the security and stability in Syria and the unity of its territory as well as meeting the aspirations of the Syrian people.
The leaders expressed their support to the Iraqi government’s efforts for national reconciliation to combat IS and to achieve full participation of all Iraqi people through implementation of the reforms programme which was agreed upon during last summer.
The GCC leaders expressed concern over increasing acts of violence and terrorism which threaten security, stability and unity of Libya. They reiterated their support for the elected parliament and legitimate government, expressing their support for the United Nations efforts for resumption of national comprehensive dialogue among the components of the Libyan society and calling upon all spectra of the Libyan people to assume national responsibilities and continue dialogue to find a solution to end the state of division.
The leaders stressed the need to deal with determination the dangerous phenomenon of terrorist and extremism, lauding the efforts of all member states in this regard. They also stressed the need and importance of cooperation among all countries of the world to fight against terrorism.
The leaders affirmed the GCC’s keenness to build balanced relations with Iran contributing to strengthening regional security and stability, expressing their aspirations to see normal relations with Iran be re-established based on mutual respect of the principles of good neighborliness and respect for the sovereignty of the states and take serious steps to rebuild trust and adherence to the principles of international law and the United Nations which are based on good neighbourliness and to prevent interference in the internal affairs of countries in the region, and to refrain from the use or threat of force.
SOURCE: OMAN DAILY OBSERVER