Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz presided over the regular weekly meeting of the Council of Ministers yesterday, and reviewed the achievements accomplished by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) over the past fifteen years. Remarking that the GCC member states have been not only mobilizing their potential for establishing and developing modern political, cultural, scientific, economic, financial, industrial, military and security institutions, but also playing an effective role at Arab, Islamic, regional and international levels, King Fahd stated: "They have formed a distinguished entity that bears great weight at all international forums", and noted the dedication of GCC member states' efforts in the service of Arab and Muslim causes.
Information Minister Dr. Fouad Al-Farsi reported that King Fahd made it clear that numerous bases of cooperation and solidarity have been laid by the GCC and the fruits of these are being harvested by citizens of the Arab and Muslim worlds as well as by those of the GCC. King Fahd expressed absolute confidence in the present and future of the GCC and highlighted the major role played by Islam in accelerating the process of progress and development in the Gulf region. In addition, within a very short time the GCC has laid strong foundations for economic, scientific and military integration.
King Fahd went on to brief the cabinet on recent events, welcoming the decision of Russia to withdraw its troops from the Republic of Chechnya, and the implementation of the food-for-oil resolution adopted by the UN Security Council to put an end to the sufferings of the Iraqi people. Dr. Al-Farsi briefed the cabinet on the outcome of the meetings of the ministerial committee of the Information Ministers of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and confirmed the Kingdom's readiness for cooperation in information matters with all Arab and Muslim countries. The cabinet also welcomed the positive and firm stand of the United States administration concerning Israel's policy of procrastination regarding the UN resolutions, reiterating the Kingdom's concern for realization of a comprehensive and just settlement of the Syrian and Lebanese as well as the Palestinian tracks.
The cabinet then adopted a number of resolutions, including approval of the draft of the protocol for member states of the Council of Arab Interior Ministers pertaining to combating terrorism approved by their decision number 257 dated January 5, 1996; and authorization of the President of Youth Welfare or his delegate to sign the draft of the cultural cooperation agreement between the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and that of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.