Iraq: February 18, 2001


The nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, and the UAE) have signed a new defense pact that defines an attack on any member to be an attack on them all, and launches plans to expand the Rapid Reaction Command from a 5,000-man brigade to a 25,000-man division. Iran immediately called for the GCC to recognize its role in defending the Gulf region and to provide Iran with a role within the pact. The GCC has been warming politically to Iran for some time now, but has remained opposed to any security ties to Tehran.--Stephen V Cole


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