Bahrain, Saudi rulers meet after trade row overshadows summit

RIYADH - Bahrain’s king His Highness Hamad held talks with Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz yesterday after he stayed away from a Gulf summit in Manama in protest at its free trade deal with Washington.

By (AFP)

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Published: Tue 28 Dec 2004, 12:03 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 11:49 AM

The Saudi Press Agency made no reference to the spat in its report of the meeting in Dammam.

King Hamad expressed his “pride in the role played by Saudi Arabia in serving the causes of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC),” SPA said. A Bahraini official said earlier the king was travelling to Saudi Arabia to discuss “bilateral relations first but it is natural that they (also) discuss economic matters.”

Bahrain’s signature of a free trade deal with the US without waiting for the GCC’s other five members prompted accusations from Saudi Arabia that it was undermining the bloc’s economic integration efforts.

Defence Minister Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz headed the Saudi delegation to the December 20-21 summit in what analysts saw as a sign of Riyadh’s displeasure at its declining influence over its smaller neighbours.

More news from