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UAE Foreign Minister calls for efforts to revive Mideast peace process

posted on 12/03/2007: 584 views

Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan has urged the international community to exert more efforts to revive the peace process in the Middle East and to contain crises that may have negative impact on the countries of the region.

In a joint press conference with his French counterpart Philippe Douste-Blazy in Abu Dhabi yesterday, Sheikh Abdullah stressed the need to resume peace process and to encourage all parties involved to respect relevant international legitimacy resolutions, especially those relating to Arab-Israeli conflict.

Sheikh Abdullah welcomed Blazy and praised the progressive relations between the two countries. He referred to the recent opening of the Sorbonne campus in Abu Dhabi, as well as plans to open a branch of Louvre museum in the UAE's capital. "Such steps reflect the strong strategic relations between UAE and France," he said. Sheikh Abdullah also lauded the outcome of the meeting of UAE-France joint committee, concluded today in Abu Dhabi.

On the formation of a national unity government in Palestine, Sheikh Abdullah said that the agreement reached in Makkah under the initiative of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, needs to be put into practice by all Palestinian parties, specially Fatah and Hamas.

The French Foreign Minister thanked General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces and Sheikh Abdullah for the hospitality accorded to him and his accompanying delegation.

He praised the level of ties between the two countries and reiterated France support to the UAE in all fields especially that relate to security and defence. The two countries signed in 1995 a defence cooperation accord. Blazy said that he discussed with Sheikh Abdullah regional developments, including the Iranian nuclear dossier, situation in Iraq and Palestine and the future of Lebanon. He thanked Sheikh Abdullah for the efforts made by the UAE during 'Paris 3' conference.

Asked about France's stand on the Iranian nuclear dossier, Blazy said that his country had always stood for 'firmness and dialogue'. "European countries urged Iran to show goodwill but they didn't.

They failed to reach for the extended hand and preferred to isolate themselves both politically and economically." He, however, stressed that military option should be "the last resort as it will destabilize the region." Commenting on the Syrian issue, Blazy said that France did not want to see unilateral and uncoordinated initiatives.

"Europe has joint foreign and defence policies. Security Council's resolutions must be implemented and all facilities must be offered to the panel investigating murder of Rafiq Hariri and other crimes committed in Lebanon." Earlier, Sheikh Abdullah received the French Foreign Minister.

Sheikh Abdullah welcomed Blazy and his accompanying delegation and expressed wishes for further progress in the two countries' relations. During the meeting, the two sides reviewed cooperation between the two countries, especially in economic, commercial, investment, educational and cultural fields. They also exchanged views on current regional developments. (Emirates News Agency, WAM)


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