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Abdullah bin Zayed attends GCC Ministerial meeting with US Secretary of State

posted on 28/09/2013: 2123 views



New York,NY: H. H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE Foreign Minister, attended on Thursday the Gulf Cooperation Council for Arab States (GCC) ministerial meeting with the US Secretary of State John Kerry, held on the margins of the 68th session of the General Assembly of United Nations.

The meeting was also attended by the US Secretary of Defence, Chuck Hegel.

During the meeting, the GCC Foreign Ministers discussed with Kerry ways to strengthen relations and strategic cooperation between the GCC states and the US in political, economic and security areas, including coordination between the two sides in the political, military and security fields.

The two sides also exchanged views on the latest regional and international developments, as well as on issues on the agenda of the UN Security Council and the 68th session of the General Assembly of UN, in particular developments in the Middle East peace process, efforts to settle the standoff in Syria, the issue of chemical weapons in Syria, developments in Egypt and topics related to Iran, including the Iranian nuclear programme.

At the conclusion of the meeting, they issued a joint statement on the violations committed by the Syrian armed forces against civilians, including the chemical attack in the suburbs of Damascus on 21st August. The statement said that the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and senior Syrian officials were accountable for all the atrocities being suffered by the Syrian people.

The GCC-US statement called for a speedy political transition process in Syria that reflects aspirations of the Syrian people and their unity in the framework of political pluralism and respect for human rights.

The statement stressed support of the two sides for the Syrian opposition alliance and for the holding of the Geneva 2 conference, to find a political solution to the Syrian conflict based on the results of the Geneva 1 conference held last year. They reiterated their commitment to continue diplomatic and humanitarian efforts to alleviate suffering of the Syrian people.

It praised the efforts exerted by Kuwait to organise the Syrian Donors Conference on 30th January last year. The conference generated over US$1.6 billion in form of pledges made by the donors to Syrians. The statement also commended the role being played by Syria's neighbours in hosting the Syrian refugees.

On the developments in Egypt, the two sides stressed the importance of stability in Egypt. They expressed their support for the future roadmap and schedule to form a constitutional and democratic government in Egypt.

Regarding Yemen, the GCC-US statement praised Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur al-Hadi and his government and their leadership to the comprehensive political transition in Yemen in accordance with the GCC initiative. They urged the Yemeni parties to sustain a smooth process of political transition in accordance with specified schedules. The statement called on all Yemenis to seize this exceptional opportunity to settle their disputes amicably.

The two sides pledged to continue the provision of foreign aid to Yemen to improve the life of people there.

They welcomed the efforts being exerted by the US that had contributed to resumption of the Palestinian-Israeli talks, aiming to reach a political solution based on the two states solution, in accordance with UN resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative. The two sides resolved to support a just permanent solution based on the setting up of a viable and sovereign Palestinian state and the settlement of all issues to achieve final peace in the region.

The two sides expressed concerns about Israeli settlement activities in the Palestinian territories, including Jerusalem. They expressed their support for the Palestinian economy.

Regarding the Iranian nuclear programme, the statement called on the Iranian government to respect The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the UN Security Council resolutions to reach peaceful settlement.

The two sides also expressed their concerns about the environmental impact of the Iranian nuclear programme in general and the Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant in particular. They called on Iran to build good relations with its neighbours and to follow a policy of non-interference in their internal affairs. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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