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UAE fully committed to protecting its territory: Sheikh Abdullah on Mabhouh murder

posted on 14/03/2010: 1073 views

The UAE definitely cannot and will not tolerate such a crime happening on its soil, commented UAE Foreign Minister of H.H Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan on the killing of Mahmoud Al-Mabhouh, a top Hamas military leader, last January in a Dubai hotel "The UAE has got full support of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the Arab League in following these criminals, "Sheikh Abdullah told reporters at a joint press conference in Abu Dhabi in presence of visiting Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs Markos Kyprianou.

'We are going to be extremely aggressive in showing our right to getting these individuals but also sending a very clear message to whoever is behind (the crime) that the UAE is fully committed in protecting its territories.

'We look at this crime as not only a crime that has happened on the UAE territory and (therefore constitutes) a violation of the UAE territory It is also a violation of the ID cards and passports of respective European countries and Australia" he said.

"We are pretty much in good contacts with these countries that have been showing a lot of cooperation with us, which we are appreciative of but at the same time this is something the UAE is going to pursue.

"We are going to do our very best to bring these criminal to justice in the UAE," he stressed.

"We are going to be extremely aggressive in showing our right to getting these individuals but also sending a very clear message to whoever is behind (the crime) that the UAE is fully committed in protecting its territories," said Sheikh Abdullah.

For his part, Kyprianou said the use of European passports by the killers of Mabhouh is condemned and entails legal action.

On the UAE-Iranian relations, Sheikh Abdullah said apart from the issue of the three UAE islands, now under the Iranian occupation, Abu Dhabi and Tehran maintain improving trade relations and are exchange of visits between the two countries' officials.

He expressed the UAE's hopes that Iran would get into agreement with the international community on the issue of its nuclear program.

He further expressed hopes the issue of Tehran's nuclear program would be resolved by diplomatic means.

Sheikh Abdullah also made it clear that the UAE, like any other member of the UN, 'will respect any international sanctions could be imposed by the UN Security Council against Tehran.

The UAE foreign minister said he hoped that a settlement would be reached before that point.

On the UAE-Cypriot relations, Sheikh Abdullah said the two countries are making efforts to reach, it the second half of this year, agreements to avoid double taxation and protect joint investments.

The UAE-Cypriot relations, he noted, are also put in the context of GCC-EU relations.

He urged both blocs to exert more efforts to reach a free trade agreement as soon as possible.

"We ask both blocs to seriously work on this agreement talks on which have been going on for 20 years now," Sheikh Abdullah remarked adding that "this needs a larger role by both sides." For his part, the Cypriot Minister said that in addition to briefing Sheikh Abdullah on the present phase of the direct negotiations for the solution of the Cyprus problem, the two sides are exploring ways to further enhance bilateral relations in various areas.

Also, the two ministers expressed rejection of Israel's recent announcement of new settlement plan in East Jerusalem.

Sheikh Abdullah said "the UAE conveyed a very clear message to our friends, the Americans who are sponsors of peace talks, that there is a need to cancel decision on this settlement plan." For his part, the Cypriot minister said "the Israeli settlement plan complicates and undermines peace efforts in the region." Kyprianou expressed his country's support to the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian state and for the resumption of Middle East peace talks. - Emirates News Agency, WAM


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