2003 News Story

GCC and EU issue joint statement on Iraqi crisis

A joint statement was issued in Doha, Qatar, today by a meeting of foreign ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), whose headquarters is in Riyadh, and the Brussels-based European Union (EU), emphasizing that war against Iraq is not inevitable and stressing the importance of using force only as a last resort. At the same time, the statement called on Iraq to end the crisis by completely and effectively complying with the requirements of the UN Security Council. The two sides confirmed their determination to urge a ban on proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, including the eradication of Iraq's through peaceful means and in accordance with UN Security Council resolution No. 1441. They expressed support for the mission of the international arms inspectors in Iraq and urged that they be given enough time and capabilities to fulfill their job effectively and completely, and that Iraq show full cooperation with them. They also called on Iraq to demonstrate greater cooperation in resolving the issue of Kuwaitis, and others, who have been detained in Iraq since the Gulf War, reiterating commitment to the independence, integrity and sovereignty of the State of Kuwait within its internationally recognized borders.