(MENAFN - Arab Times) Member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) will present certain ideas regarding means of resolving the crises in Yemen and Afghanistan at the two conferences due to be held on these two issues in London on Wednesday and Thursday, the Deputy Prime Minister said on Tuesday.
Sheikh Dr Mohammad Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, also the Foreign Minster, said in a statement to journalists ahead of his departure to London to take part in the two conventions, that the first meeting on Yemen would be attended by delegates representing the GCC countries, Arab states and permanent member states of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
This conference is scheduled to address conditions in Yemen that pose a danger to the stability and security not only in the GCC countries but also in other parts of the world, the deputy premier and foreign minister said.
The GCC states have prepared certain ideas for resolving this crisis, he said, adding that the foreign ministers of the member states of the council would hold a coordination meeting ahead of the convention.
Sheikh Mohammad denied that donations will be declared for Yemen at the convention.
Donations for Yemen were declared three-four years ago and they were not disbursed due to the unstable conditions in this country, "because we wanted to ensure that these funds would be spent in a manner that would realize the set objectives such as aiding the development process, combating poverty, hunger and diseases." As to the other meeting, he indicated that it would group representatives of states that maintain friendly ties with Afghanistan, and that it was aimed at ensuring that the nation would not plunge into wide-scale chaos again.
Meanwhile, the British Charge d' Affaires to Kuwait Tim Stow emphasized the essence of the international press conference to be held Wednesday in London to discuss the current situation in Yemen and Afghanistan, which indicates the level of Britain's concern to incidents taking place in the two countries.
During a press conference at the British Embassy in Kuwait Tuesday, Stow said Yemen is facing economic crisis due to administrative failure, and that instability, terrorism and poverty are on the rise in the country.
He noted the challenges facing Yemen have serious adverse impacts on its security and the entire region, saying the United Kingdom is concerned about the unpleasant situation in the country, hence the decision to cooperate with the Yemeni government and the relevant international bodies to increase aid to the country.
He explained there is limited opportunity for rescuing the situation in Yemen, while the European Union, US and GCC nations have to combine efforts to assist President Abdullah Saleh and his government. "The basic problem in Yemen is about the economy, so the government should stand firm against corruption and division, because terrorism will continue to strive if urgent solution is not proffered," he warned.
Stow noted Britain has been at the forefront of assisting Yemen since the 1970s. "We spent 20 million sterling to support Yemen's development in 2008/2009, while we have allocated 105 million sterling to help the country through 2008-2011," he added.
Concerning the Afghanistan issue, Stow revealed the London summit will focus on coordination and offering of assistance to enhance actualization of President Karzai's extensive agenda, which he emphasized in the inaugural speech at the inception of his second term of office.
President Karzai had specifically mentioned security, administrative restructure, and clampdown on corruption, besides the strengthening of relations with neighboring countries, reintegration, and social and economic development as major areas of serious concern.
In the meantime, the British envoy expressed concern over the possible spread of terrorist activities in Yemen and Afghanistan beyond the region, and disclosed Britain is worried that about 70 percent of terrorist activities emanate from Afghanistan.
By: Shawqi Mahmoud