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Kuwait is Germany's gateway into Mideast - FM
April 19, 2017, 8:38 am
Kuwaiti First Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah and German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel during the joint news conference.

The State of Kuwait constitutes "an important destination" to help Germany be briefed accurately on the Middle East region, visiting German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said late Tuesday.

Speaking at a joint news conference with Kuwaiti First Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, the German minister said he was keen on selecting Kuwait as first leg of his trip to the Middle East region.

He expressed his happiness as the two sides have similar stances on situations in the region, despite different culture between them. Gabriel described the talks with his Kuwaiti counterpart Sheikh Sabah Al-Hamad as "fruitful" in all dossiers, noting that they shared views on several issues in the region.

He stressed the distinguished relations between Kuwait and Germany that have been established for many years, indicating that Germany seeks to promote the "successful" investment ties.

Regarding the Syrian crisis, he revealed that Germany and Kuwait have identical stances in finding a peaceful solution to the crisis, involving the key parties like the United States and Russia in contributing to achieving this move, combating the so-called Islamic State and supporting the Gulf-Iranian consultations.

The German minister stressed the great role and efforts by Kuwait regarding Yemen's crisis, saying that his country feels "responsible" for providing support in this regard that would back international and regional efforts to resolve the crisis.

Kuwait is a key country in terms of providing humanitarian aid, confirming that if the world's countries provide aid like Kuwait, there will be advanced steps in this file.

Asked about his visit to Iraq, he said Germany wants to contribute to boosting security in that country through "training security forces, and maintaining stability in the liberated areas and the unity of Iraq, and reconstructing areas there. Meanwhile, Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled said that both Kuwait and Germany seek to help Iraq in the reconstruction phase after liberating areas from the terrorist groups.

Germany has a project to cleanse Iraqi territories from mines, he said, adding that it is a key matter to secure the brotherly Iraqi people. Asked about dialogue with Iran, Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled said "we and GCC states are convinced that Iran is a key country in the region, and the existence of normal relations between Iran and GCC states would benefit our countries and the region generally".

He revealed that there would be an appropriate chance during the Gulf consultative summit in the mid-May to discuss means of creating a platform for this dialogue. The Kuwaiti official expressed appreciation to the German key role in helping Kuwait achieves development renaissance.

He also extolled the strategic partnership with Germany that was established more than 50 years ago. Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled said Germany is Kuwait's strong trading partner in the European Union, and the country's fourth largest trading partner in the world.

The average trading volume between Germany and Kuwait is about USD 1.5 billion annually, he said, indicating that Kuwaiti investments in Germany hit USD 31.5 billion. He stressed that Kuwaitis are looking forward to boosting cooperation in all key sectors.

The talks with the German minister dealt also with developments in regional and international arenas, Sheikh Sabah said. He lauded German role in finding peaceful solutions to several regional and international issues.

Germany provided big contributions to help Syrians during the three conferences hosted by Kuwait in 2013, 2014 and 2015, in addition to the London and Brussels conferences, he concluded.

Source: KUNA

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