The below is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken convened a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Ministerial in New York. The Secretary met with Bahraini Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid al Zayani, Dr. Nayef Falah M. Al-Hajraf, Secretary General of the GCC, Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Ahmed Nasser al-Mohammed Al-Sabah, United Arab Emirates Minister of State Khalifa Shaheen al-Marar, and Permanent Representative of Oman to the United Nations Ambassador Mohamed Al Hassan.
The Secretary reiterated the importance of our decades-long partnerships in the Gulf and congratulated the Secretary General and GCC member states on the organization’s 40th anniversary. Secretary Blinken highlighted the enduring interest that the United States shares with the people and governments of the region in fostering a Middle East that is peaceful, secure, and prosperous, and where our partners are secure from external aggression. He stated that the United States would continue to work closely with Gulf partners to address new challenges, such as confronting the COVID-19 pandemic and advancing innovations and policies to tackle the climate crisis, while committing to build on our longstanding partnerships that promote regional security and stability, bilateral trade and investment, and meaningful people-to-people ties.
Secretary Blinken and GCC member states discussed work to achieve a common approach toward a durable solution to the conflict in Yemen, pursuing diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to compliance with the JCPOA, and countering Iran’s continued aggressive behavior in the Gulf. Secretary Blinken also made clear that the United States joins our Gulf partners in condemning the Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia, including civilians and infrastructure. The Secretary pledged to support reintegrating Iraq into the region and agreed with GCC members that the achievement of a negotiated two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains an essential component of regional peace and stability. They also discussed the imperative of the United States and the GCC working together to address the region’s pressing humanitarian needs.
The Secretary thanked GCC partners for the critical assistance on Afghanistan, including flight staging, logistical and medical support, transportation, and temporary housing that helped more than 65,000 people transit through the Gulf. He commended these invaluable contributions, and others, which vividly illustrate the importance and depth of our ties and he agreed with GCC members to continue our close coordination on Afghanistan.