Flags of GCC member states. Image Credit: File picture used for illustrative purposes.

Abu Dhabi: The Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Nayef Falah Al Hajraf, confirmed on Saturday that the leaders of the Gulf states are keen to hold the 41st summit on January 5, despite the exceptional circumstances, at a time when a positive atmosphere prevails surrounding the summit.

Al Hajraf delivered a letter from King Salman bin Abdulaziz, to the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, including an invitation to attend the summit. The meeting reviewed the GCC achievements, especially in the social, economic and commercial fields.

Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) quoted Al Hajraf as saying that this summit comes in exceptional circumstances, as the world witnesses the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic on various walks of life. He added that convening this summit, despite the circumstances and precautionary measures, reflects a full and great belief on the part of the leaders in the importance of holding it, given the interest it represents for all issues of concern to citizens of the Gulf states, and endeavours to support and strengthen the Gulf Cooperation Council system and push it forward.

He pointed out that the GCC is closing the fourth decade of its march, and proceeding towards the fifth decade with hope, towards achieving the best, prosperity, development and prosperity for the citizens of the GCC countries under the wise guidance of the leaders of the Gulf countries.

Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa also received an invitation from the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to participate in the summit. The message was delivered to Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, during his meeting in Manama with Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Al Hajraf said, 'Bahrain’s presidency of the 41st session coincides with the entry of the Gulf Cooperation Council into its fifth decade with a deep-rooted partnership. Days and events have confirmed that GCC is a cohesive system capable of overcoming difficulties and challenges, and continuing to achieve complementary achievements, in keeping with its lofty goals.'

A positive atmosphere prevails over the summit, especially after the Kuwaiti announcement earlier last month about what it described, in the words of its Foreign Minister, of "positive atmospheres" for reconciliation.

This comes with the conclusion of the meeting of the foreign ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council on Sunday, hosted by Bahrain, in preparation for the upcoming summit, to discuss the summit agenda, and prepare recommendations on the most important files.

The Bahraini Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdul Latif Al Zayani, affirmed "full confidence in the Saudi efforts and its direction in preserving the cohesion of the Gulf Cooperation Council and starting a new phase for the Gulf dialogue in light of the ties that bind us together." He also stressed in statements reported by the Bahrain News Agency (BNA) on "The need to end conflicts in the region, and work to bring peace and stability to all countries and their peoples”.

The summit will be held in Saudi Arabia after its transfer from Bahrain, with a wave of hopes in the Gulf circles for a settlement of the current crisis, which expects that the declaration in this regard will coincide with the upcoming summit, while Riyadh takes the lead in the Gulf initiative.

The series of positive indicators to solve the Gulf crisis continues during the preparations for the 41st Gulf Cooperation Council, despite the continuous escalation of the media that tries to abort any approach or methods for the anticipated reconciliation.

A state of optimism prevails in the political capitals of the Gulf, as Anwar Gargash, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, recently confirmed, through a post on Twitter, that he aspires to a successful summit that promotes Gulf dialogue.

Gargash added that “the sisterly Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s management of this file is a source of confidence and optimism, and from Riyadh, the capital of the Gulf’s decision, we take steps, God willing, to strengthen the Gulf dialogue towards the future.”