UAE senior officials meet Iran nuclear negotiator

Dr Anwar Gargash and Khalifa Al Marar held discussions with Ali Bagheri Kani during his visit to the Emirates

Dr Anwar Gargash, diplomatic adviser to President Sheikh Khalifa, and Minister of State Khalifa Al Marar meet Iranian deputy foreign minister Ali Bagheri Kani. Photo: Wam
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UAE senior officials met Iran’s top nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani, during his visit to the Emirates on Wednesday.

Mr Kani, also Iran’s deputy foreign minister, met Dr Anwar Gargash, diplomatic adviser to President Sheikh Khalifa, and Minister of State Khalifa Al Marar.

The meeting “emphasised the importance of strengthening relations on the basis of good neighbourliness and mutual respect”, state news agency Wam reported.

“This should coincide within the framework of common interest and working towards achieving regional stability, prosperity, as well as developing economic and trade relations,” said a statement by the agency.

Dr Gargash said last week that the UAE has taken steps to de-escalate tension with Iran to avoid confrontation and to build confidence.

“We are working hard to build communication and bridges with all countries, even those who we have disagreements with,” Dr Gargash said during the Abu Dhabi Strategic Debate.

For months the UAE has been supporting the idea of greater engagement with Iran.

Dr Gargash said dialogue was the only way to avoid confrontation in the region and that further escalation would have a devastating effect, especially when governments are trying to consolidate economic recovery amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“We can build together greater confidence between us and make progress for a sustainable status quo. It will be better served for Iran to work co-operatively with its neighbours,” he said.

The international community is preparing to revive talks with Tehran regarding the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which collapsed in 2018 when the US accused Iran of violations.

Discussions are set to resume on November 29.

The UAE has long pushed for countries in the region to be at the table for negotiations on a future nuclear deal, after former US president Donald Trump’s administration abandoned the accord.

It believes the pact was flawed for not addressing Iran's missile programme and network of regional proxies.

The UAE has pushed for any renewal of the deal to include these issues as well as the nuclear accord's fundamental aspect: UN-led monitoring of Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of international trade sanctions.

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Updated: November 25, 2021, 7:26 AM