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  Doha Declaration of the 44th Session of the Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council (Doha Summit)

General Secretariat – Doha

Based on the noble goals on which the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has been based since its founding in 1981, including supporting just Arab and Islamic causes, Their Majesties and Highnesses the leaders of the Cooperation Council countries discussed the critical and dangerous challenges facing the region, especially the Israeli aggression against Gaza and Israeli attacks in the West Bank, including the city of Jerusalem and Islamic and Christian holy sites.

Their Majesties and Highnesses the leaders of the GCC, during their meeting in the 44th session of the Supreme Council in the city of Doha, State of Qatar, on Tuesday (December 5, 2023), expressed deep concern and great dissatisfaction with the blatant Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people, and condemned the escalation of acts of violence and indiscriminate bombing carried out by the Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip, the forced displacement of the civilian population, and the destruction of civilian facilities and infrastructure, including residential buildings, schools, health facilities and places of worship, in clear violation of international law and international humanitarian law.

Their Majesties and Highnesses the leaders of the GCC countries, appreciated the joint mediation efforts of the State of Qatar, the Arab Republic of Egypt and the United States of America, which resulted in reaching an agreement for a humanitarian truce in the Gaza Strip, stressing the necessity of immediately resuming this humanitarian truce, in order to achieve a complete and sustainable ceasefire, and to ensure the arrival of all humanitarian and relief aid and basic needs, the resumption of the work of electricity and water lines, and the entry of fuel, food and medicine for the residents of Gaza.

The summit affirmed that the Cooperation Council stands by the brotherly Palestinian people and its continued support to alleviate the suffering of the residents of the Gaza Strip, and to extend a helping hand to rebuild what the Israeli war machine destroyed in its attacks on the Strip during the past years. In 2009, the GCC countries established the “Cooperation Council Programme for the Reconstruction of Gaza”, and pledged within the framework of this programme an amount of USD 1,646,000,000 billion (One billion and six hundred and forty-six million US dollars), in addition to direct bilateral aid, both in kind and financial, and unofficial aid. The most recent of which was the pledge in October of an additional amount of USD 100 million (one hundred million US dollars) for humanitarian efforts, in addition to popular campaigns that mobilised hundreds of millions of US dollars to support the steadfastness of the brotherly Palestinian people.

The leaders of the GCC countries warned of the dangers of expanding confrontations and the spread of the conflict to other regions in the Middle East, unless the Israeli aggression stops, which will lead to dire consequences for the peoples of the region and for international peace and security. The leaders of the Cooperation Council countries called on the international community to intervene to establish a ceasefire and protect Palestinian civilians, and take the necessary measures within international law to respond to Israel’s practices and its policy of collective punishment against the defenceless residents of Gaza.

The Supreme Council reaffirmed its firm stance on the Palestinian issue, demanding an end to the occupation and supporting the sovereignty of the Palestinian people over all the occupied Palestinian territories since June 1967. It also emphasised the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital, guaranteeing the rights of refugees according to the Arab Peace Initiative and international legitimacy resolutions. The Council stressed the need to double the efforts of the international community to resolve the conflict in a way that fulfills all the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people.
The Council commended the ongoing efforts of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its initiative in partnership with the Arab League, the European Union (EU), the Arab Republic of Egypt, and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to revive the peace process in accordance with international law, United Nations resolutions, and the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002.

The leaders welcomed the extraordinary Arab-Islamic summit hosted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on November 11, 2023, to discuss the dire situation in Gaza and its serious security and political implications. They also praised the efforts of the ministerial committee formed by the summit, chaired by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, with the aim of "formulating an international movement to stop the war on Gaza and exert pressure for a genuine and serious political process to achieve permanent and comprehensive peace, in accordance with the recognised international references."

The leaders welcomed the participation of His Excellency President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of the Republic of Turkey, as a guest at the forty-fourth session of the Supreme Council, which witnessed discussions on ways to enhance cooperation between the two sides and addressed issues of common interest, particularly the Palestinian issue and the Israeli aggression on Gaza. The Supreme Council of the GCC commended the role of His Excellency, the Turkish government, and the dear Turkish people for their support for the Palestinian cause and the resilience of the Palestinian people in their land.

The Council expressed concern about the escalating manifestations of racism and hatred against Arabs and Muslims in several countries, as well as the alarming spread of anti-Islamic discourse, which has created a negative political climate in international relations. They condemned the burning of the Holy Quran and the increasing attacks on Arabs and Muslims, targeting them deliberately.

The Council emphasised the importance of concerted efforts to confront this phenomenon politically and diplomatically, strengthening international efforts to combat racism against Arabs and Muslims, supporting relevant regional and international frameworks to address this issue, and working on a new approach to collective cooperation to confront and counter misconceptions and misleading information in the media, as well as anti-Islamic social attitudes.

The summit praised the growing role of the Council's member states in addressing political, security, and economic challenges in this region and beyond, and their contribution to resolving issues that threaten peace, security, and stability. It highlighted the hosting of major international events, including Expo 2023 Doha in October which was hosted under the theme of "Green Desert, Green Tomorrow", the Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) hosted by Qatar from March 5 to 9, 2023 at the level of heads of states and governments, the hosting of Expo 2030 by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in addition to hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2034, the inauguration of COP28 in Dubai on December 1, and the meetings of the Inter-Parliamentary Union hosted by the Kingdom of Bahrain in March 2023 under the theme "Promoting Peaceful Coexistence and Inclusive Societies: Fighting intolerance."

The leaders affirmed that the success of these international events is an achievement for all the Council's countries and peoples, as organising major events enhances international dialogue and communication between the peoples of the world, strengthens the region's position as an international center for business and economy, and promotes efforts to develop renewable energy sources and deal with climate change.