(MENAFN- Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) News report
KUWAIT, May 24 (KUNA) -- Forty-two years have passed since the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) was created, marking the most successful integration experiment in the region and constituting a core pillar of security and stability.
Founded on May 25, 1981, the GCC remains to be the most significant regional entity that has managed to notch up numerous gains for the interest of its countries and peoples, as described by His Highness the Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah during the 43rd Gulf Summit held in Riyadh on December 9.
Delivering Kuwait's speech during the gathering, Sheikh Mishal said the joint Gulf journey embraces so many accomplishments that had upgraded this great entity to the ranks of the world's most fruitful and effective entities.
His Highness the Crown Prince added that the council had fulfilled the expectations and hopes of its countries' peoples in view of Gulf citizenship and strategic and economic benefits.
On May 25, 1981, the leaders of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Sultanate of Oman, Qatar and State of Kuwait met in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, where they reached a cooperative framework joining the six states to effect coordination, integration and inter-connection among the Member States in all fields in order to achieve unity.
The decision was not a product of the moment but an institutional embodiment of a historical, social and cultural reality. Deep religious and cultural ties link the six states, and strong kin relations prevail among their citizens.
The GCC's basic objectives are to effect co-ordination and integration, to deepen and strengthen relations, links and areas of cooperation, to stimulate scientific and technological progress in the fields of industry, mining, agriculture, water and animal resources, to establish scientific research, to establish joint ventures and encourage cooperation by the private sector for the good of their peoples.
Over the past four decades, the GCC march has witnessed major achievements in various fields that have positively reflected on the people of the GCC member countries and have met their economic, political, military and security ambitions.
Thanks to the wisdom and farsightedness of its leaders, the GCC has managed to prove itself as a strong framework for collective security and a fence for protecting and safeguarding its countries' gains and addressing all risks and perils.
In foreign policy, the member states have adopted single positions on a host of political issues based on good-neighborliness, non-interference in internal affairs and respect of countries' sovereignty as well as peaceful resolution of disputes.
Ending the Iraqi-Iranian war, liberating the State of Kuwait from the Iraqi invasion, backing Iraq's unity, stability and sovereignty, supporting the cause of the occupied UAE three islands, achieving inter-Gulf reconciliation and supporting the Palestinian issues are all prime paradigms in this regard.
Militarily, the first meeting of the GCC army chiefs of staff, held in the Saudi capital of Riyadh in 1981, was a jump-off for forging inter-Gulf military cooperation, with numerous military strategies having been adopted over the past four decades.
As for security cooperation, the bloc's interior ministers met in Riyadh in February in 1982 in a maiden move on the right track for promoting security coordination and cooperation between the six member states, particularly in the fight against terrorism and illegal drugs as well as civilian defense.
Economically, inter-Gulf economic integration has been achieved through the 1981 unified economic agreement, the 2001 economic agreement, the monetary fund, single currency, customs union, common Gulf market and economic citizenship.
In terms of media, several achievements have been made in this regard; mainly including a media code of ethics, a media strategy and cooperation in TV, press and news agencies.
In relation to regional and international cooperation, the Gulf entity has played an effective role in promoting and strengthening its cooperative relations with Arab and foreign countries, along with regional and global groups and organizations. (end) abd.mt
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