Morocco keen on joining Gulf Arab bloc: FM

Moroccan Foreign Minister Taieb Fassi said his country is very keen on joining the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) , the Saudi-owned daily Al-Hayat quoted him as saying late Saturday.

"Morocco has responded to the Gulf invitation in a positive fashion," he told the newspaper as he wrapped up his visit to Saudi Arabia after the Gulf bloc invited the North African monarch to join.

The GCC, a political and economic bloc of oil-producing Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain, said this week it would consider a request by two Arab monarchies Jordan and Morocco to join.

The GCC, which was founded in 1981, is expected to begin talks with Morocco and Jordan, but no date has been set for the talks.

Fassi said Morocco's inclusion into the bloc needs time and a very in-depth study.

[Source: Xinhua, Riyadh, 15May11]

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