Kuwait tasked with addressing GCC secretary general name issue

May 19, 2010

Kuwait, the 2010 chair of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), has been tasked with narrowing the gap between fellow GCC members Bahrain and Qatar over the name of the next secretary general of the alliance, a Kuwaiti paper reported.

“Kuwait would consult with both Bahrain and Qatar to overcome their divergences and hopes that the name of the new secretary general will be ready before October,” Al Siyassah newspaper said on Wednesday, quoting unnamed sources. “It will be submitted at the preparatory meeting of the Abu Dhabi summit.”

Manama and Doha have locked horns after Qatar refused to endorse the nomination of Mohammad Al Mutawa, a former information minister and currently the cultural advisor of Bahrain’s prime minister.

Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, the other four GCC members, have publicly said that they accepted Al Mutawa, but Qatar said that while it approved a Bahraini nominee for the position, it wanted another nominee.

Doha did not publicly state the reasons for its stance, although observers link it with the former minister’s positions during the border conflict that marred bilateral relations until the International Court of Justice issued a verdict in March 2001, accepted by both countries.

The GCC summit last December in Kuwait City failed to bring the divergent views closer and the final communiqué referred to a consensus on a Bahraini nominee, but did not mention his name.

Hopes that the issues would be resolved at the GCC advisory summit in Riyadh on May 11 were dashed when the communiqué did not refer to it and officials refused to make comments, saying that they would be using “wisdom and discretion.”





About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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