Manama: Bahrain should not wait for other member countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and should proceed to form a confederation with Saudi Arabia as a first step towards a wider Gulf union, an influential Bahraini lawmaker has said.
"Bahrain should make the first move towards the union that will be joined by the other members of the GCC," MP Adel Al Mouawda said. Saudi King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud in December told fellow GCC leaders that the alliance should move from the stage of cooperation to the stage of union within a single entity.
His call sparked a flurry of official and popular praise in Bahrain where a 25-kilometre long causeway links the two countries. A committee of representatives from the six GCC member countries was set up to look into the move.
The veteran lawmaker representing Al Asala, the expression of Salafism in Bahrain, said that the Bahrain-Saudi Arabia confederation had become a necessity.
"This is a crucial issue and cannot be procrastinated or delayed as the conditions in the region are becoming vitally sensitive and critically ominous.There are too many intricately dangerous layers in the region and no country can handle them without support from others," he said.
"There are also impediments and divergences on the foreign policies of some GCC countries that may stall the move towards a Gulf confederation," he said.
According to Al Mouawda who was asking the foreign minister Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa whether there was a roadmap towards a Gulf confederation said that the GCC people were keen on a new union.
"We have the same identity and the same social, cultural and economic fabric. We cam learn from the European Union and as long as there is determination, there should be no obstacle," he said.