April 2, 2023

The journey – al-Assad’s second to the oil-rich nation in as a few years – comes after a go to to Oman final month.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has arrived within the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on his first go to to the Gulf nation for the reason that devastating earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria final month.

The UAE’s president, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, greeted al-Assad and his spouse Asma within the capital Abu Dhabi on Sunday, official information company WAM stated, earlier than high-level conferences on the presidential palace.

Sheikh Mohammed stated in a press release on Twitter that the 2 “held constructive talks aimed toward creating relations between our two nations”.

“Our discussions additionally explored methods of enhancing cooperation to speed up stability and progress in Syria and the area,” Sheikh Mohammed added.

The journey – al-Assad’s second to the oil-rich nation in as a few years – comes after a go to to Oman final month. The 2 journeys are his solely official engagements in Arab nations for the reason that begin of the Syrian battle in 2011.

Abu Dhabi, which normalized relations with al-Assad’s internationally remoted authorities in 2018, has contributed to assist efforts within the aftermath of the February 6 earthquake that struck southeastern Turkey and northern Syria, killing tens of 1000’s.

The Syrian presidency stated Asma, on her first identified official go to overseas with al-Assad since 2011, would meet with Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, who’s the Emirati president’s mom and regarded within the UAE because the “Mom of the Nation”.

The go to marks a continuation within the ongoing thaw of relations between Syria and different Arab nations, greater than a decade after the 22-member Arab League suspended Damascus’s membership over al-Assad’s crackdown on protesters and afterward civilians through the battle.

Worldwide sympathy following the quake seems to have sped up the regional rapprochement that had been brewing for years

“The UAE’s strategy and efforts in direction of Syria are a part of a deeper imaginative and prescient and a broader strategy aimed toward strengthening Arab and regional stability,” senior Emirati presidential adviser Anwar Gargash stated on Twitter.

“The UAE’s place is obvious concerning the necessity for Syria to return to” its place within the Arab world and regain legitimacy within the area, Gargash stated on Twitter.

“This was confirmed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed throughout his assembly in the present day” with al-Assad, the adviser added.

The UAE has pledged greater than $100m in help to quake-hit Syria, by far the biggest sum by any single nation.

It has additionally dispatched a search and rescue group, supplied 1000’s of tonnes of emergency aid objects and supplied medical therapy for Syrian quake victims in Emirati hospitals.

And the UAE’s international minister, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, final month turned the primary senior Arab official to go to Syria for the reason that quake.

Emirati analyst Abdulkhaleq Abdulla stated Abu Dhabi “is satisfied, together with many Arab states, that the time has come to reconcile with Assad… and see Syria return to the Arab League and the Arab fold”.

“The UAE is spearheading efforts to reconcile with enemies of the previous and remodel them into the chums of tomorrow,” Abdulla informed AFP information company.

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