Qatar Foreign Minister Visits UAE As Relations Thaw

10/6/2021

Qatar's foreign minister visited the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as the two Gulf states work on improving bilateral ties after years of a bitter rivalry.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani was received by the UAE's de facto ruler Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan in Abu Dhabi and discussed "ways to enhance them (ties) to serve the interests of their nations", state news agency WAM said.

Wednesday's meeting followed a similar visit in August by Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed al-Nayhan, UAE's National Security Adviser and a brother of Sheikh Mohamed, to Doha where he met with Qatar's emir.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt agreed in January to end the dispute that had led them to sever ties with Qatar in 2017 over accusations that Doha supported "terrorism" - a reference to Islamist groups. Doha denied the charges.

Riyadh and Cairo have led efforts to mend ties and appointed ambassadors to Qatar, while Abu Dhabi and Manama have yet to do so. All but Bahrain have restored travel and trade links.

The Gulf states have been pursuing a more moderate approach to defuse regional tensions, including with their rivals Iran and Turkey, as the United States reduced its military power in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia and the UAE rely heavily on Washington for their security.

Report by Reuters

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