To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when he last met the Foreign Ministers of the Gulf Co-operation Council: and what was discussed.
At the third EC/GCC Foreign Ministers conference in Kuwait on 16 May, I met the Foreign Ministers of all the Gulf states except Saudi Arabia, which was represented by its Oil Minister. We discussed ways of developing closer economic co-operation between the European Community and the Gulf Co-operation Council and regional issues—especially the strengthening of the Gulls collective security. I stressed that the security and well-being of the Gulf states remain of great importance to us.
Was careful consideration given to any growth in the reconstruction of the Iraqi military machine, which would destabilise that region?
Everyone at the conference was clear that we must maintain sanctions against Iraq in their full present rigour and that we must insist on Iraq's full compliance with the Security Council resolutions—notably those which provide for the inspection and then the destruction of the weaponry of Saddam Hussein.