Sheikh Mohamed and Blinken hold talks on Israel-Gaza war

US Secretary of State is visiting allies in the region as Israel prepares for invasion

US State Secretary Antony Blinken arrives in Abu Dhabi

US State Secretary Antony Blinken arrives in Abu Dhabi
Powered by automated translation

President Sheikh Mohamed and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken have held talks as Israel prepares to launch a major offensive in Gaza.

The senior American official landed in Abu Dhabi on Saturday evening, only hours before Israel's military said a "land, air and sea operation" in the coastal strip was planned.

"During their meeting, they discussed the utmost priority of ensuring complete protection for civilian lives and emphasised the urgent need to open humanitarian corridors to facilitate the delivery of medical and relief aid to the Gaza Strip, in addition to an immediate cessation of hostilities," state news agency Wam reported.

"The meeting addressed the need to intensify regional and international diplomatic efforts to prevent further escalation, violence, and crises in the region in light of the impact of serious developments.

"The two sides discussed the importance of actively pursuing a clear political vision to achieve a just and comprehensive peace that strengthens regional security and stability. In this regard, they reiterated their joint commitment to enhancing stability and prosperity in the Middle East."

Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed, Deputy Ruler of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dr Anwar Gargash, Diplomatic Adviser to the President, were present.

Reem Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Co-operation, and Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador to the US, were also at the talks, alongside Mr Blinken's delegation.

Earlier, Mr Blinken visited the Abrahamic Family House, which celebrates the ties that bind Christianity, Judaism and Islam.

He arrived from Riyadh where he met Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan. He and Prince Faisal urged Israel and Hamas to protect civilians.

About 2,200 Palestinians have died in Gaza following retaliatory aerial bombardment from Israel. It came after Hamas launched an unprecedented surprise attack against Israel last Saturday, killing 1,300.

Most of the dead on both sides are civilians.

Updated: October 14, 2023, 6:28 PM