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UAE FM Meets Abbas, Blair, Karzai in New York
Sheikh Abdulla (left) meets Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority.

Bilateral relations between the UAE and respective countries and issues of mutual concern were at the centre of meetings which brought together UAE Foreign Minister H.H Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan and leaders and counterpart foreign ministers of other countries.

The separate meetings took place on Sept. 26, 2008 in New York on the sidelines of the 63rd sessions of the United Nations General Assembly.

Sheikh Abdulla and Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority (PNA), at one of the meetings discussed the latest political, security and economic developments in the Palestinian territories. Sheikh Abdulla reiterated the UAE's support to PNA and its political positions against Israel settlement expansion in the occupied Palestinian Territories.

Abbas explained PNA's position on Palestinian national reconciliation and Egypt's relevant efforts. He stressed that improving the security situation in the Territories would contribute to the economic situation.

On potential aid to PNA, Abbas said he looked forward to the outcome of the upcoming economic conference in Nablus, West Bank and welcomed any initiatives and projects by Arab states and individual investors.

"PNA is determined to continue talks with Israelis on the basis of Roadmap and the agreements reached at Annapolis conference." Abbas added.

At another meeting, Sheikh Abdulla and Tony Blair, the Quartet's current Special Envoy reviewed Palestinian-Israeli negotiations as well as the Quartet's political efforts to overcome barriers and improve the humanitarian situation of Palestinians who suffer from the Israeli occupation and practices.

Another meeting which brought together Sheikh Abdullah and Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari discussed ways to further promote bilateral diplomatic and economic relations between the UAE and Iraq. Zebari said the Iraqi Government's appreciation of the UAE's recent decision to re-open its embassy in Baghdad.

Sheikh Abdulla also met Rangin Dadfar Spanta Afghan Foreign Minister and discussed the situation in Afghanistan as well as bilateral relations and ways to further promote cooperation on economic, investment and development Between the UAE and Afghanistan.

At another meeting, Sheikh Abdullah and Ecuadorian Minister of Foreign Relations, Foreign Trade, '&' Integration Maria Isabel Salvador Crespo discussed ways to promote diplomatic and economic relations between their two countries. They also discussed peaceful and renewable energy issues.

He also met European Union Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, Benita Ferrero-Waldner. The meeting discussed the UAE's and EU's positions on regional and international issues of mutual concern, in particular the latest developments in the occupied Palestinian Territories, Iraq, Afghanistan and Iran's nuclear programme.

The meeting also discussed negotiations on a free trade agreement between Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and EU.

Sheikh Abdullah expressed hope that the agreement would be reached in the near future to further boost EU-GCC economic and energy cooperation.

Sheikh Abdullah and President of Seychelles James Alix Michel discussed at a yet another separate meeting ways to further promote diplomatic and investment relations as well as the exchange of political and economic expertise.

At another meeting, the UAE-Nepalese economic, investment, and trade relations were discussed by Sheikh Abdulla and Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal who gave an overview of the newly-instated democratic political system in his country.

Sheikh Abdulla also met separately with the Portuguese Minister for Foreign Affairs Luis Amado, Latvian Minister of Foreign Affairs Maris Riekstins and Finnish Minster of Foreign Affairs '&' Nordic Cooperation Cai-Goran Alexander Stubb.

The three meetings discussed the UAE bilateral diplomatic, economic, trade and cultural relations with respective countries as well as political positions on regional and international issues on the agenda of the 63rd sessions of the United Nations General Assembly. (Emirates News Agency, WAM)






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