Gulf States Sign ‘Solidarity and Stability’ Agreement at the 41st GCC Summit


Gulf leaders at the 41st annual Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Summit have signed a “solidarity and stability” agreement aimed at resolving the three-year diplomatic dispute with Qatar, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said on Jan. 5.

Named after the Saudi city where the summit is being held, the Al-Ula agreement ends the Saudi-led blockade against Qatar, which was first imposed in June 2017 over claims that Qatar supported terrorism and was too close with Iran. Qatar repeatedly denied the allegations.

“There is a desperate need today to unite our efforts to promote our region and to confront challenges that surround us, especially the threats posed by the Iranian regime’s nuclear and ballistic missile program and its plans for sabotage and destruction,” the Saudi crown prince said at the summit.

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan later confirmed at a press conference that the signing of the agreement has restored full ties with Qatar.

“What happened today is… the closure of the folder of all points of difference and a full return of diplomatic relations,” Prince Faisal bin Farhan said.

“The wisdom of Gulf leaders is capable to overcome all differences. There is political will and good faith to ensure the implementation of the reconciliation,” Prince Faisal bin Farhan also said.

United Arab Emirates (UAE) Prime Minister and Vice President Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum described the summit as “positive.”

“A positive summit unifying ranks and establishing fraternity… changes and challenges surrounding us require genuine Gulf strength, cohesion and cooperation as well as Arab depth and stability,” the UAE prime minister stated in a tweet.

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