Doha summit to map out security plan

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Leaders of the six-nation GCC are expected to discuss several key issues at their two-day summit starting Tuesday including regional security, terrorism, declining oil prices and relations with Iran.

Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, will lead the Saudi delegation.

“The summit will map out a security plan, and authorize the establishment of a new joint military command to ensure full-proof regional security and combat terrorism,” said Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, secretary general of the GCC, in a statement on Monday.

The event comes “at a very important time and amid extremely critical circumstances, which undoubtedly require more unity and solidarity among the GCC countries,” he said.

The GCC leaders would also discuss ways and means to boost their “bilateral ties,” he added. This comes after Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates mended ties with Qatar in November after months of acrimony over Doha’s support of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Featuring high on the agenda would be the security of Egypt as it battles terrorists in parts of that country. Al-Zayani said the summit participants would also discuss the lack of security in some countries, the increased suffering of refugees, and regional interventions in Arab nations.

He said there would be a focus on several important reports from ministerial committees and the council’s general secretariat on military, security, economic and development issues.

He said the GCC leaders have made it clear that they are committed to fighting terrorism, which has no borders and nothing to do with Islam. This fight would require patience and wisdom, and include tackling those who support terrorist ideas.

He said the GCC is committed to helping Yemen protect its sovereignty and unity and find a peaceful path to peace from the current chaos and violence enveloping it.

Hassan Al-Oraibi, a political analyst, said the GCC leaders are also expected to address the international oil market. “Oil diplomacy will form the essential component of the discussions as the oil price decline of the past six months has been stunning.”

 
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