Message From (P)GCC

The Kuwaiti foreign minister says there is a genuine willingness and desire on the part of Persian Gulf Arab states to have normal and fair relations with Iran
Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah (L) meets President Hassan Rouhani in Tehran on January 25. Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah (L) meets President Hassan Rouhani in Tehran on January 25.

The Foreign Minister of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah on Wednesday delivered a message to President Hassan Rouhani from his emir and on behalf of the six-member (Persian) Gulf Cooperation Council. 

It was his first visit to Tehran in two years. 

Before meeting Rouhani, he conferred with Mohammad Javad Zarif, twice, to discuss bilateral ties, regional developments and international issues.

In the meeting, Zarif described as "praiseworthy" the role of Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah in promoting good neighborliness in the region.  

Sabah said on Tuesday that the message is on the "basis of dialogue" between Persian Gulf Arab states and Iran.

Speaking at a press conference earlier with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in Kuwait City, he said Iran-(P)GCC relations "must be based on the UN Charter and principles of international law."

"There is a genuine willingness and desire to have normal and fair relations with Iran. We are all partners in this region and we have a common interest and we have huge capabilities on both sides be it on the Iranian or in the Arab side," he said, according to a transcript posted on NATO's website. 

"Opening a channel of dialogue and communication, I think, this will enable us to better benefit from our capabilities and resources and it will bring benefit to both sides."

Early in December, the Kuwaiti emir told the 37th (P)GCC Summit in Manama that there is a need for "constructive dialogue" between the council and Tehran, adding the talks should center on "abidance by international law, including sovereign rights."

Iran and some Persian Gulf Arab states, particularly Saudi Arabia, are at odds over various conflicts in West Asia, notably in Syria, where Saudi Arabia and Qatar give arms to militants fighting to bring down the Syrian government and Iran provides advice to Syrian troops.

The Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen has also contributed to the deterioration of relations.

Saudi Arabia in January 2016 cut diplomatic relations with Iran after attacks on its diplomatic missions in Tehran and Mashhad  by protesters angered by the execution of a prominent Saudi Shia cleric in the kingdom. 

Tehran has often proposed meaningful dialogue with the Persian Gulf Arab rulers aimed at settling differences and has denied Saudi allegations that it intends to build an empire in the strategic region.

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