Gulf Arab leaders attending the 41st GCC summit in Saudi Arabia

The summit is expected to see the signing of formal agreements to end a 4-year boycott of Doha

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman welcomed Arab Gulf leaders who arrived on Tuesday in the kingdom to attend the 41st Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit set to take place in the historic city of al-Ula.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince welcomed Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa, as well as his counterpart Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman welcomes Prime Minister and Vice-President of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum upon his arrival to attend the Gulf Cooperation Council’s (GCC) 41st Summit in Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia January 5, 2021. Bandar Algaloud/Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court/Handout via REUTERS

The Crown Prince also received Dubai’s ruler and the vice president of the UAE, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, and Kuwait’s Emir Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah.

He also received Oman’s Deputy Prime Minister Fahd bin Mahmoud al-Said.

The Crown Prince also greeted and hugged Qatar’s Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani upon his arrival to the summit, which is expected to see the signing of formal agreements to end a 4-year boycott by some GCC members of Doha. 

Saudi Arabia, along with allies Bahrain, UAE, Egypt, boycotted Doha in mid-2017, accusing Qatar of supporting terrorism. Qatar has denied these charges.

Ahead of the gathering, Kuwait announced that Saudi Arabia would reopen its airspace and borders to Qatar under a deal that a senior US official said would be signed in the presence of White House senior adviser Jared Kushner.

Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry is also set to attend the summit.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman welcomes Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa upon his arrival to attend the Gulf Cooperation Council’s (GCC) 41st Summit in Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia January 5, 2021. Bandar Algaloud/Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court/Handout via REUTERS

A handout picture provided by the Saudi Royal Palace on January 5, 2021, shows Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (R) welcoming Emir of Kuwait Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah (L) upon his arrival in the city of al-Ula in northwestern Saudi Arabia for the 41st Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit. – Saudi Arabia will reopen its borders and airspace to Qatar, US and Kuwaiti officials said, a major step towards ending a diplomatic rift that has seen Riyadh lead an alliance isolating Doha. The bombshell announcement came on the eve of GCC annual summit in the northwestern Saudi Arabian city of Al-Ula, where the dispute was already set to top the agenda. (Photo by BANDAR AL-JALOUD / various sources / AFP)

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman welcomes Omani Deputy Prime Minister Fahd bin Mahmoud al-Said upon his arrival to attend the Gulf Cooperation Council’s (GCC) 41st Summit in Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia January 5, 2021. Bandar Algaloud/Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court/Handout via REUTERS

A handout picture provided by the Saudi Royal Palace on January 5, 2021, shows Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (R) welcoming Emir of Qatar Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani (L) upon his arrival in the city of al-Ula in northwestern Saudi Arabia for the 41st Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit. – Saudi Arabia will reopen its borders and airspace to Qatar, US and Kuwaiti officials said, a major step towards ending a diplomatic rift that has seen Riyadh lead an alliance isolating Doha. The bombshell announcement came on the eve of GCC annual summit in the northwestern Saudi Arabian city of Al-Ula, where the dispute was already set to top the agenda. (Photo by BANDAR AL-JALOUD / Saudi Royal Palace / AFP)

By : Reem El-Sabaa – AHRAM online

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