Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Premier and Minister of Defense of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (photo) received at the Conference Palace in Jeddah this morning the Ministers of Defense of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member States participating in the first consultative meeting of the Joint Defense Council.
They were Kuwait’s Premier and Minister of Defense Lt. General Sheikh Khalid Al-Jarrah Al-Sabah; Bahrain's Minister of State for Defense Affairs, Lt. General Doctor, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Khalifa; Sultanate of Oman's Minister Responsible for Defense Affairs, Badr bin Saud bin Hareb Al-Busaidi; Qatar's Minister of State for Defense Affairs, Maj. Gen. Hamad bin Ali Al-Attiyah; UAE's Undersecretary of the Ministry of Defense, Mohammed bin Ahmed Al-Bawardi and U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, who is currently on a visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Addressing the meeting, Crown Prince Salman welcomed the participants in the first joint meeting for GCC Defense Ministers with the U.S. Secretary of Defense to discuss viewpoints on ways of cooperation between the two parties in a way that serves the joint interests, achieves the aspirations of the parties' leaders and peoples and contributes to enhancing the regional security and world peace.
“We are here today amid highly important circumstances and increasing threats to the region's security and stability, a matter pushing us doomed to continue contacts and exchange viewpoints with our friends in order to coordinate the positions, policies and defense plans of our countries towards any development or emergency according to our group's joint perspective”, Prince Salman said.
“We are pleased today with the participation of His Excellency Chuck Hagel, the U.S. Secretary of Defense, whose country's administration is tied with our countries by historical and strategic relations that contributed to the enhancement of the security of the Gulf and stability of the region, hoping that this cooperation continues to the satisfaction of our joint interests”, he added.
A number of serious security challenges have emerged in our Arab region in the recent years, he added, citing the political crises battering some Arab countries, the race to obtain mass destruction weapons, the interference of some countries in the GCC internal affairs and the growing phenomenon of terrorism, necessitating doubling our efforts and coordinating positions to achieve the requirements of the security of the GCC countries and stability of the region.
He went on to say that “the security challenges, whether they are the result of internal crises or illegal designs from some countries in the region, will cast their repercussions, not only on the GCC countries but also on the regional and international security and peace, making the security of the Gulf and its countries a joint responsibility between the GCC countries and the world community, particularly the United States of America given the economic and security ties between the U.S. and the GCC member states as well as the constant commitment of the United States to keep the security and stability of the region”.
“The new security developments in our region require forging joint policies and positions that respond to the security challenges in all kinds, topped by upgrading the level of coordination and cooperation between defense sectors in the GCC countries and the friendly countries who are interested in the security and stability of our region, led by the United States of America whom we hope to take into its consideration the security and political increasing threats for the security of the Gulf and its countries, including the plans of some countries in the region to change the balance of regional powers to its favor and at the expense of other countries in the region,” Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud concluded.
Source: Saudi Press Agency – SPA