Bahrain king stresses national unity, GCC integration in parliament speech

October 9, 2011

King Hamad Bin Eisa Al Khalifa on Sunday reiterated Bahrain’s commitment to a strong and united Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

“We stress that the Kingdom of Bahrain will exert all its efforts to develop and reinforce the outstanding fraternal relations between the GCC countries,” King Hamad said.

“The premise is that in the world of force, there is room only for the strong. The strength of the GCC stems from the faith of its leaders and the stress of its peoples on the need for cohesion, unity and the development of its institutions. We will strive towards further coordination, integration and interdependence among the GCC countries in all areas in order to achieve unity,” the king said in his address at the opening of the second session of the third legislative term.

The 40 members of parliament, the government, diplomats and the media were present at the opening hosted for the second consecutive year at the Eisa Cultural Centre, Bahrain’s largest cultural edifice named after the former Emir Shaikh Eisa Bin Salman Al Khalifa who passed away in 1999.

King Hamad said that the units of the Peninsula Shield, “a force of goodness, security and peace” were “a model of the full cooperation between the countries and peoples of the Gulf Cooperation Council and a natural extension and an integral part of the forces of each of the GCC member countries.”

“In this regard, the Kingdom of Bahrain is proud with the political and defensive support from our brothers in the GCC countries and which reflects the status of the countries within the Council,” he said.

Units from the Shield, the military arm of the GCC, were deployed in Bahrain in March as the country dealt with a deteriorating security situation linked to the unrest that hit the country. Bahrain said that their deployment was under a mutual defence agreement signed by the six GCC countries.

The Bahraini monarch said that the national dialogue was “a consolidation of our firm and unlimited commitment to supporting the state of laws and to reinforcing the role of constitutional institutions and the principle of cooperation between the branches.”

The dialogue, a forum for around 300 Bahrainis from diverse backgrounds, was held in July to help heal a widening political and social rift resulting from the conflicting views towards events unfolding in the country in February and March.

“Dialogue is the language of civilizations and the means for success and goodness,” he said.

Referring to the economic situation in the country, King Hamad said that “preserving positive growth rates and continuing to create adequate job opportunities will remain the main challenges.”

“Our economic policy should also remain all-inclusive and integrate everybody as the Government focuses on encouraging investments and on providing all facilities to investors,” he said.



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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