A general view of the GCC leaders attending the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit at Bayan palace in Kuwait City on December 5, 2017. AFP / Yasser Al-Zayyat
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Kuwait's emir Tuesday quickly called an end to a planned two-day meeting of the Gulf Cooperation Council within hours of its start amid the ongoing diplomatic dispute surrounding Qatar.Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah's decision came after the United Arab Emirates earlier in the day announced a new partnership with Saudi Arabia separate from the GCC.The Emirati Foreign Ministry said the new "joint cooperation committee" was approved by the UAE's ruler and president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nayhan.The Emirati announcement did not say whether any other Gulf Arab countries would be invited to join the new group, but the development puts pressure the GCC, whose members – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Emirates – are all U.S. allies.Kuwait's 88-year-old emir, Sheikh Sabah, has tried to mediate the dispute, so far without success.However, only Qatar and Kuwait were represented by their ruling emirs, sparking anger online by Kuwaitis that the nations boycotting Qatar had slighted their leader.
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