King Abdullah: Let us have a new Gulf Union
The six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council concluded its two-day summit in Riyadh on Tuesday with the bloc's leaders vowing to support the historic initiative of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah to transform the GCC into a single powerful regional entity.
The proposal to transform the GCC into a union of Gulf states, which will herald a new era of Gulf cooperation amid changing regional alliances, figured prominently in the final communiqu issued by GCC heads of state.
The Saudi King, who is also current chairman of the GCC, had made the proposal in his opening speech to the 32nd session of the supreme council of the GCC in Riyadh. The leaders have given directives to the Ministerial Council to form a specialized body comprising three members from each state.
The body will be mandated to study the proposal in all its aspects in the light of the views exchanged among the leaders."The meetings of the board will be held at the headquarters of the General Secretariat, which will provide all necessary administrative, technical and financial support.
The GCC supreme council has assigned the finance ministers of its members to study the statute and structures needed to create the Union fund, said the statement without giving any timeframe for Jordan and Morocco to become members. The statement also did not explain the type of membership to be given to the new entrants.
The statement appreciated the role of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahayan of the UAE for his untiring efforts to promote the GCC during his country's chairmanship. GCC heads of state threw their weight behind Kuwait and urged Baghdad to normalize ties with its neighbor.