UAE reopens Syrian embassy amid regional influence race

31 December, 2018, 11:08 | Author: Orlando Hughes
  • UAE 're-opens embassy in Syria' as Arab leaders begin to welcome Assad back from the cold

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) reopened its embassy in Damascus, Syria's capital, on Thursday, for the first time in back seven years, to mark a diplomatic boost for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and some of his Arabian foes amid military victory in wars.

Syria was suspended from the Arab League back in 2011 during the time of the conflict, but nearly seven years later UAE raised its flag in Damascus again during a ceremony on Thursday.

"Syria is a country in the heart of the Arab world and it's an indescribable country in the Arab world and this is an invitation to the Arab countries to return", he said.

The UAE Minister of State pointed out that opening communication with Damascus would not leave the doors open for Iranian interference.

United Arab Emirates has resumed its diplomatic service at Damascus in Syria after six years of suspension signaling a thaw in the relations between the two countries, as also with the Arab world.

Syria's membership of the Arab League was suspended seven years ago.

Bahraini Foreign Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa said in a Twitter post that his country had not broken off diplomatic ties with Syria "despite hard circumstances" - a reference to Syria's almost eight-year-old civil war.

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The border crossing between Syria and Jordan was reopened in October.

"This does not rule out a possible change of the Arab position in the future", he added.

Earlier this week, al-Watan said that Syrian security services chief Ali Mamlouk visited Egypt over the weekend upon an official invitation of Egyptian intelligence chief Abbas Kamel and held talks with Egyptian officials in Cairo. Arab countries have sanctioned Damascus and condemned its use of military force against the opposition. Since then, most Arab countries have cut or downgraded their diplomatic relations with Syria.

Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa attends the Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Kuwait.

US President Donald Trump claimed on Monday that Saudi Arabia, Iran's regional arch foe, had agreed to finance Syria's huge reconstruction needs.

Last week's announcement by the White House that U.S. troops would be pulled out also cleared the path for Turkey to muscle in on Kurdish areas in northeastern Syria.

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