Climate change: UAE Foreign Minister meets with Bashar al-Assad

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The UAE foreign minister met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus on Tuesday, a sign of improving relations between Assad and an Arab state that once backed rebels trying to overthrow him.

Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed is the highest-ranking Emirati official to visit Syria in a decade since the outbreak of a civil war in which many Arab states have backed mainly Sunni Muslim rebels against Assad.

The foreign minister led a delegation of senior Emirati officials who discussed bilateral relations and co-operation in a meeting with their Syrian counterparts, according to a statement from the Syrian presidency.

The participants discussed exploring “new horizons for this cooperation, especially in vital areas in order to strengthen investment partnerships in these areas,” the statement said.

Sheikh Abdullah underlined in his meeting with Assad “the UAE’s determination for Syria’s security, stability and unity,” the UAE state news agency WAM reported.

He also stressed “the UAE’s support for all efforts to end the Syrian crisis, consolidate stability in the country and meet the aspirations of the fraternal Syrian people,” WAM reported.

Senior UAE official Anwar Gargas, a diplomatic adviser to the UAE president, wrote on Twitter that “the UAE continues to build bridges, strengthen ties and connect what was cut off … and will be willing to save the area from further congestion and ongoing conflict. ”

A correspondent for Lebanon’s al-Manar television station, which is run by Assad’s Lebanese Hezbollah ally, said strong security measures had been taken on the road from Damascus airport to the city.

The UAE has been at the forefront of efforts by some Arab states to normalize relations with Damascus, and earlier this year called for Syria’s readmission to the Arab League. It reopened its embassy in Damascus three years ago.

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Source From: Capital

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