Saudi invites Qatar to GCC summit amid reconciliation expectations

Saudi invites Qatar to GCC summit as expectations of Gulf reconciliation grow
2 min read
03 December, 2019
Qatar's official news agency has reported that the Gulf state has received an invitation to attend the Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Riyadh.
Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani (2nd right) received the invitation [Getty]

Saudi Arabia's King Salman invited Qatar's emir to a summit meeting next week of the Gulf Cooperation Council in Riyadh, Qatari state media reported Tuesday without specifying if Doha had accepted.

"The emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani received a written message from ... Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud to attend the meeting of the 40th session of the Gulf Cooperation Council supreme council in the capital Riyadh on December 10," the Qatar News Agency reported.

The letter was received by Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani during a visit by Abdul Latif Al-Zayani, the Secretary General of the GCC.

In June 2017, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the UAE cut off relations with Qatar and imposed a land and air blockade on the Gulf country, accusing it of supporting terrorism. Qatar has emphatically denied the allegation and the blockade has been largely ineffective.

Read more: Gulf Cup kicks off in Qatar with 'football diplomacy' key

Kuwaiti Prime Minister Khaled Al-Sabah said on Sunday that the forthcoming GCC summit would be “an extremely important step forward to Gulf reconciliation”.

Al-Sabah added that the 24th Arabian Gulf Cup tournament currently taking place in Qatar would also help bring about reconciliation between Qatar and the countries blockading it.

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