Prince Faisal Bin Farhan Al Saud speaks during a news conference at GCC Summit in Al-Ula. Reuters
Full ties have been restored between Qatar and the four nations that severed relations with Doha in a rift that began over three years ago, Saudi Arabia's foreign minister said Tuesday.
"What happened today is... the turning of the page on all points of difference and a full return of diplomatic relations," Prince Faisal Bin Farhan told a press conference at the conclusion of a landmark regional summit in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman met separately with Qatar's Ruler Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani, after the pair publicly embraced at the airport.
"During the meeting, they reviewed bilateral relations between the two brotherly countries and ways of consolidating the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) joint action," the official Saudi Press Agency said.
Leaders of the six-member GCC signed two documents on Tuesday, the Al-Ula Declaration, named after the Saudi city where this year's regional summit was held, and a final communique.
The documents are general in terms, but Prince Mohammed said earlier that the Gulf states had inked an agreement that affirms "our Gulf, Arab and Islamic solidarity and stability".
Leaders will discuss a number of important topics to enhance the process of cooperation and integration among the member states, says Al Zayani.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid landed in Saudi Arabia as the head of the UAE’s delegation participating in the 41th GCC Summit, and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia was the first to receive him.
Under the agreement, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt will lift blockade of Qatar, and Doha will drop related lawsuits.
The US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo has welcomed the progress achieved by the Al Ula Declaration issued at the Gulf Cooperation Council summit held yesterday in Saudi Arabia, describing it as "a positive step towards restoring Gulf and Arab unity."
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