[Bahrain], Oct 27 (ANI): Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, the Foreign Minister of Bahrain, has said that the Middle East Strategic Alliance (MESA) will be formed by next year.
The Gulf alliance, also dubbed as 'Arab NATO' by White House officials, will consist of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Egypt is also expected to be a part of the security alliance that is supported by US President Donald Trump.
While mentioning that MESA would cooperate on economic issues, Bahrain's Foreign minister said, "It (MESA) is an alliance for security and prosperity for the region and will be open to those who accept its principles," according to Al Jazeera.
Saudi Arabia and Bahrain also stressed on the maintenance of stability in the region, while keeping Iran's "vision of darkness" in check. Speaking in Manama, Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister said, "We are now dealing with two visions in the Middle East. One is a [Saudi] vision of light ... One is [an Iranian] vision of darkness which seeks to spread sectarianism throughout the region."
He further said, "History tells us that light always wins out against the dark ... The question is how do we defeat them."
The Saudi Minister's comments come amidst the death of Jamal Khashoggi, a journalist who was killed at Saudi Arabia's consular premises in Istanbul, Turkey on October 2.
The Gulf country has arrested 18 Saudi nationals in connection with the journalist's killing, while several high-ranking officials have been sacked due to their alleged involvement.
US President Donald Trump has pushed for transparency in investigations around Khashoggi's death, as allegations mount against its ally, Saudi Arabia, that has supported USA's efforts in cornering Iran.
James Mattis, the US Defence Secretary, was quoted by Al Jazeera as saying, "Failure of any one nation to adhere to international norms and the rule of law undermines regional stability at a time when it is needed most."
Furthermore, the Saudi-led blockade on Qatar also casts a shadow on MESA's creation. Accusing Doha of supporting Iran, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) had severed ties with the nation, which is set to host the Football World Cup in 2022. (ANI)