Germany shares UAE’s view about combatting terrorism: German Foreign Minister

ABU DHABI — Germany supports the UAE’s efforts at confronting those who fund extremists, according to German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel.

The German minister made the statements Tuesday during a news conference held with H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, affirming that the UAE is Germany’s closest and most important partner.

The German minister is on a state visit to the UAE during which he is discussing ways of advancing the privileged and strategic relations binding the two countries which date back to more than four decades.

H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan underscored the importance of the long-standing relations between Germany and the UAE which, he said, are based on mutual respect and common interests and serve as a model to be copied for developing relations between world countries. The meeting between the two ministers occasioned a review of an array of topics of common interests, including the situations in Libya, Syria and Iraq. Following the meeting the two ministers held a news conference where they briefed the audience on the outcome of their meetings.

“We are delighted to see the relations with Germany growing to advanced levels and to see non-oil bilateral trade amounting to more than US$16 billion, with more than 3600 German companies operating in the UAE, playing a significant role in helping the UAE develop,” said H.H. Sheikh Abdullah.

“On the personal level I’m very delighted to see many Germans consider the UAE as their second home; there are more than 14 thousand Germans we hope to provide with all means of comfort and decent work in our country.”

The foreign minister added that there are 87,000 Emiratis visiting Germany on an annual basis besides 112 direct flights between the two countries as well as more than 650,000 German tourists visiting the UAE, which are all figures that, he said, confirm in no uncertain way the robust relations between the two countries and the mutual affection, admiration and love between the two peoples.

H.H. Sheikh Abdullah stated that the meeting was a good opportunity to review an array of topics specially the developments in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Yemen as well as the Palestinian-Israeli peace process.

“The meeting was also an opportunity to talk about the Qatari crisis about which we will continue discussions after this news conference along with other issues,” Sheikh Abdullah added.

For his part, the German Minister expressed thanks to H.H. Sheikh Abdullah for the warm welcome, expressing belief that the UAE is “Germany’s closest ally with whom we have long-standing and very close relations in many areas. We have more than 800 German companies in the region, including very powerful large, small and medium-scale firms on which we largely depend. These companies have come to the region and found very good economic environment for them in the UAE from where we establish communications with the entire world.”

The minister noted, “Germany has very good relations with the UAE in areas of security and military cooperation, particularly with regards to combatting terrorism and extremism where we are very close allies.”

“Today was a very good opportunity to review a series of issues about which we share common views regarding a solution in Syria. We share the same view about Libya where we have to get all parties united to build state institutions. In Iraq we want to see one unified state; we don’t want to see a divided Iraq. We also have a common view about an independent Palestinian state,” said the German minister.

He noted that the meeting also reviewed the situation in the Gulf region and the Qatari crisis, adding, “We share the UAE’s view that all forms of funding terrorism and terrorism and sheltering terrorists must come to an end and we agree as well that this applies to the whole region.”

Source: Emirates News Agency