US vice president, officials travel to UAE to pay tribute

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A U.S. delegation, led by Vice President Kamala Harris, flew to the United Arab Emirates on Monday to pay tribute to the federation’s late ruler and meet the new president — which is The strong support shows that the Biden administration is trying to repair America’s troubled relationship with its partners.

The delegation included Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, CIA Director William Burns and climate envoy John Kerry, among others. It was the highest-level public visit by a Biden administration official to the oil-rich capital, Abu Dhabi.

UAE appoints confident Abu Dhabi crown prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan Its new president comes after his half-brother died on Friday. Sheikh Mohammed has served as the country’s de facto ruler and shaped the country’s foreign policy since Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan suffered a stroke nearly a decade ago.

Emphasizing Abu Dhabi’s influence in Western and Arab capitals, A series of presidents and prime ministers descended on the desert emirate over the weekend In honor of the late Sheikh Khalifa, honoring Sheikh Mohammed and cementing ties. French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson were the first European leaders to fly to the UAE capital.

Before traveling to Abu Dhabi, Harris said she would travel on behalf of President Joe Biden to offer his condolences on the passing of the president. long ill Sheikh Khalifa And solidify the vital relationship between the United States and the United Arab Emirates.

“The United States takes the strength of our relationship and partnership with the UAE very seriously,” Harris told reporters. “We will be there to express our condolences, but also our commitment to strengthening this relationship.”

Blinken first touched down in Abu Dhabi before meeting his Emirati counterparts.Officials are vague on the agenda, but they are widely expected to address the UAE’s longstanding commitment to U.S. security in the region and the Tensions between the two countries over the Russian war About Ukraine.

As Europe tries to wean itself off Russian crude, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia face intense pressure from the United States to avoid Russia and increase oil production to improve energy market stability.

But the UAE is an important trade partner of Russia and a member of the so-called OPEC+ deal, of which Russia is a key member. UAE rejects US demands — The root of the resistance lies in the apparent sense that, despite its continued military presence in the Arabian Peninsula, the United States is no longer such a reliable partner.

After taking office, Biden removed the terrorist designation of Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi rebels, which fired missiles and drones at the UAE and Saudi Arabia, and tried to revive Tehran’s tattered nuclear deal with world powers — — Gulf Arab states are concerned that the deal could encourage Iran and its proxies.

The sudden and chaotic U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan last summer and a long-term foreign policy goal of shifting from the Middle East to China have fueled concerns in the Gulf Arab states. Meanwhile, the Biden administration has suspended the sale of F-35 fighter jets to the UAE, which former President Donald Trump agreed to.

Trump scrapped the Iran nuclear deal and wooed Emirati and Saudi officials.

Earlier this spring, Yousef al-Otaiba, the UAE’s ambassador to the United States, said the allies were going through a “stress test.”

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