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10 December 2023

GCC emergency Summit condemns 'acts of sabotage' on commercial ships in UAE regional waters

By Wam

The GCC Summit in Makkah has condemned the recent sabotage operations, which targeted four tankers in UAE's regional waters and drone attacks on Saudi oil facilities.

The GCC leaders discussed the exceptional circumstances and dangerous challenges the region is undergoing following the recent attacks on the UAE and Saudi Arabia and their ramifications and direct threat to the regional security and peace, to freedom of global marine navigation and trade as well as to world oil markets as a result of attempts by some countries to undermine security and stability of the region, support terrorism and interfere in other countries' internal affairs.

In its final communique today, the Makkah Summit termed the attacks on the four commercial vessels, including an Emirati oil tanker, as ''a dangerous development'' that threatens security and safety of marine navigation in the strategic region and reflects negatively on the regional and international peace and security as well as on world oil markets.

''The GCC stands in solidarity with the UAE and supports any measures and steps taken by the UAE to protect its security, stability and territorial safety,'' said the communique, calling on the international community and international marine navigation organisations to shoulder their responsibilities to prevent recurrence of such acts of sabotage.

The GCC leaders also condemned the Iranian-backed Houthi militias' drone attacks against oil pumping stations in the Saudi districts of Duwadmi and Afif. The leaders, in a final communique following their one-day urgent summit in Makkah, said these terrorist attacks were undermining security of the region, global economy and international oil supplies.

The GCC, it said, voiced full solidarity with Saudi Arabia against these terrorist threats and supported Saudi Arabia's measures to protect its security, stability and territorial safety, citing more than 225 ballistic missile attacks and over 155 drone attacks by terrorist Houthi militias against Saudi areas, including the holy city of Makkah.

The GCC leaders affirmed the collective security to defend entities and interest of their countries and regional waters.

They said the security of the six GCC countries was integrated and any attack on any member deemed an assault on all countries, in line with the GCC statute and the defense treaty.

On Iran, the GCC leaders said Iran should commit itself to principles of UN Charter, international law, good neighborliness, respect sovereignty of other states, non-interference in affairs of internal affairs of other countries, refrain from use of force or threatening to use it, cease supporting, funding and arming terrorist militias and groups, and stop fueling sectarian disputes.

They called on the Iranian regime to exercise wisdom, stop hostile acts and its efforts to destabilise security in the region.

They demanded the international community to live up to its responsibility to preserve international security and peace, and to take more serious, effective and decisive actions against the Iranian regime to prevent it from acquiring nuclear capabilities and impose more stringent restrictions on Iran's ballistic missiles progarmme.

''Iran should spare the region any conflicts by respecting international laws and conventions, not interfering in internal affairs of regional countries, stopping its support of terrorist groups and threatening safety of international maritime routes and navigation,'' the final communique underlined.

The GCC leaders commended the coordination and consultation with the US within the US-GCC strategic partnership and bilateral agreements to achieve security and stability of the region. They expressed their support for the US strategy against Iran regarding Tehran's nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, as well as its destabilising activities to regional stability and security, its support for terrorism, and the hostile activities of Hezbollah, Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Houthi militias and other terror groups.

The GCC leaders said they were keen on regional security and stability, global economic growth and stability of oil markets. They urged the international community to secure maritime navigation following attacks on UAE and Saudi Arabia.