MOSCOW, 26th May, 2016 (WAM)–The 4th joint ministerial meeting for strategic dialogue between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states and Russia issued today a joint statement in which they stressed cooperation in various regional and international issues of mutual interest, as well as bolstering bilateral cooperation in economic and social areas.

The meeting was co-chaired by Adel bin Ahmad Al-Jubeir, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia, who is also chairman of the current GCC Presidency and Sergei Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation with participation of the Foreign Ministers of the GCC States and Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, GCC Secretary General, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) has said.

The 4th joint ministerial meeting for strategic dialogue between the GCC and Russia issued today a joint statement in which the Ministers reiterated their shared intention to strengthen and develop friendship and collaboration between the two parties in various fields.  They commended the established mechanism for cooperation within the strategic dialogue between Russia and the GCC in this regard.

The Ministers agreed to continue their work in the current format for further coordination of approaches to topical aspects of mutual interest on the international and regional agendas and enhanced practical bilateral business and humanitarian cooperation.

The Ministers emphasised relations between states should be based on the principles of good-neighbourliness and full respect for sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and interests of each of state, in accordance with International Law and the United Nations Charter. The resolution of persistent challenges and crises should be reached through peaceful means within the framework of a wide national dialogue.

They agreed to combat terrorism and to work together to prevent and suppress terrorist acts through increased international cooperation, in full recognition of the UN’s central role and in accordance with UN Charter as well as through the full implementation of the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, in particular 2170 (2014), 2178 (2014), 2199 (2015) and 2253 (2015) and UN Global Counter Terrorism Strategy, supported the efforts of the UN Counter-Terrorism Center and the UN Counter-Terrorism Committee [CTC], and adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism [CCIT], at the earliest.

The Ministers condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, reaffirming that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable regardless of their motivations, and rejected associating terrorism with any religion, culture or ethnic group, emphasising the need for concerted regional and international efforts to combat terrorism and to address factors conductive to its spread, eliminate the sources and any kind of support for terrorism and violent extremism including its funding, as well as combating organised cross-border crime.

They welcomed the initiative put forward by the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin to establish a large-scale anti-terrorist front based on international legal standards and the UN Charter and operating with the consent and in close coordination with regional states that bear the brunt of burden in resisting terrorists and extremists.

The Ministers welcomed the establishment of the Islamic Military Alliance to fight terrorism and supported cooperation between the Russian Federation and the US-led International Coalition against ISIL.

They took note of counter-terrorism efforts undertaken by various international fore, including the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO), Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), Global Counter Terrorism Forum (GCTF) under the auspices of the UN.

The Ministers commended the outcome of the consultations between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation and the General Secretariat of the OIC held in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in January 2016 on the issue of combating terrorism, extremism and organised crime.

They welcomed the beginning on the 16th of January, 2016 of practical implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) concluded on the 14th of July, 2015 in Vienna and aimed at final settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue. They urged all parties concerned to faithfully implement their respective commitments to ensure sustainability of the JCPOA and called upon all countries to support its implementation.