27th GCC-Joint Council and Ministerial Meeting, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
Foreign Minister, Péter Szijjártó said in Oman’s Mashkad on Tuesday: “The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries can play a major role in avoiding escalation in the Middle East, and it is therefore particularly important that the European Union should now strengthen its cooperation with them.”
The Arab states of the Persian Gulf refers to a group of states bordering the Persian Gulf. There are seven member states of the Arab League: Bahrain, Kuwait, Iraq, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.
According to a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade after the joint EU-GCC meeting, “Europe is facing serious security challenges, with the war in Ukraine in the east and increasing migration pressure in the south, both of which directly affect Hungary due to its special geographical location.”
He pointed out that armed conflicts, wars and terrorism are the main drivers of migration, and that the evolution of the global security situation also has an impact on migration pressures.
“When the global security situation improves, the migration pressure on Europe decreases. When the global security situation worsens, wars and armed conflicts break out, the migratory pressure increases,” he warned. “That is the reason for Europe to have an interest in ending armed conflicts and finding the path for peace.” Additionally, Péter Szijjártó expressed his grave concern about the events in Israel and condemned it, emphasizing that it could lead to a major humanitarian disaster in the region.
“Unfortunately, there is also a chance that, if we fail to avoid escalation, we will face one of the worst humanitarian disasters in the history of mankind,”
Photo: Péter Szijjártó / Facebook.
He added that this came at the worst possible time, as there was a kind of “peace dynamic” in the Middle East, with the Abraham Accords, after decades of failed attempts to settle the conflict, setting the region on a path that offered a realistic prospect of peace. “The events of the past few days have put the successes of previous peace efforts in the shadows and we shall work hard to ensure that these achievements are not lost,” he stressed. He also said that he had held bilateral talks earlier in the day with his Bahraini counterpart, who had personally signed a deal with Israel to normalize relations. “Each effort shall be put into preserving at least part of the progress, made in the last three years of peace, at least to preserve hope.”
He mentioned also that he had also consulted with the Foreign Ministers of Kuwait, Oman and Saudi Arabia, as well as the Qatari Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, and there was agreement among all that the most important task for the international community now was to ensure that escalation was avoided.
The minister added that in the current situation, the Arab countries of the Gulf could play a major role, as they have been key in stabilizing the fragile Middle East and have contributed to ending many conflicts.
“We hope that this kind of stabilizing, mediating role of the Gulf countries can be played now and that they can be counted on to prevent an escalation of the conflict with Israel,” he underlined.
Finally, he called for closer cooperation between the European Union and the Gulf Cooperation Council, including the conclusion of important issues such as visa liberalization and the free trade agreement.
Via: MTI, Featured image: Péter Szijjártó/ Facebook.