Union ‘vital for a stronger GCC’
Manama, December 1, 2012
A call for a stronger and more prosperous GCC through the establishment of a union went out last night from participants at a major conference held in Bahrain.
Hundreds of people are taking part in the two-day 'GCC Union is a Public Demand' conference at the Sheraton Hotel, organised by the National Unity Assembly (NUA), our sister newspaper, the Gulf Daily News reported.
NUA chairman Dr Abdullatif Al Mahmood said many were looking forward to seeing their children and grandchildren living in a stronger and more prosperous GCC.
"We have four main motivators for the GCC union," he said. "People in GCC countries share powerful and everlasting bonds on personal, spiritual, social and historical levels, and we share one language.”
"Countries around the world are seeking to build strong unions and co-operation on military, economic and political levels to achieve growth, development and prosperity, at the same time keeping their countries' independence and sovereignty intact."
He said two successful unions stand out - the European Union and the Asean.
"We in the GCC have gone through two significant crises - the invasion of Kuwait in 1990 and the current crisis in Bahrain since February last year," said Dr Al Mahmood.
"To this day internal and external powers are trying to strip Bahrain of its Arab identity and threatening civil peace by igniting a sectarian civil war similar to what has happened in Iraq.”
"The gathering of Bahrainis at Al Fateh Islamic Centre on that cold night of February 21 last year for the sake of national unity, the activation of the GCC military agreement and the arrival of the Peninsula Shield Forces helped save Bahrain from a sectarian abyss," he said.
Dr Al Mahmood said a GCC union means political, economic and security power, giving member states a stronger position while negotiating in these fields with other world powers.
"It is the path towards a more secure Arabian Gulf for its people, especially after what we have experienced firsthand with the attempts to tear the social fabric by inciting hatred among brothers and citizens of a single country, a step towards the ‘New Middle East’ which aims to divide and weaken our countries," he said.
"We believe that the step towards a GCC union has been long overdue after the failure of the current co-operation council in fulfilling peoples' aspirations for true unity that benefits the countries and their peoples.”
"The GCC leaders have a historic opportunity to engrave their names in history and be remembered for establishing the base of a GCC union that fulfils the aspirations of their peoples," Dr Al Mahmood said.
Top Shi'ite scholar Shaikh Mohsin Al Asfoor said the GCC union was a demand that existed as an ambition within people living in the Arabian Peninsula for many years.
"Now we need the union more than before, especially with the 'democratic lies' that want to enforce dictatorship under the false banner of liberation," he said.
"The 'powers' don't want to rule us through weapons anymore, they want to rule us on the basis of offering help for reforms, while their reforms are far from needed and with reforms coming from within."
His Majesty's adviser for cultural and scientific affairs Dr Mohammed Jaber Al Ansari said the union was a need in line with evolution and progress of life.
"Before we were under threats, but now we are under real war that needs a stronger entity and that's a union," he said.
"A union is not just military, it is something that will benefit all member states in various aspects and at the highest levels." – TradeArabia News Service