Senior UAE figure makes rare visit to Qatar as relations improve

Senior UAE figure makes rare visit to Qatar as relations improve
The UAE's National Security Adviser met with Qatar's ruling emir on Thursday in a rare visit to Doha.
2 min read
26 August, 2021
Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed arrived to Doha on Thursday [Getty]

A senior UAE security official arrived in Doha to meet the Qatari emir, in the first such visit in four years when a now-ended blockade was launched on Qatar by Gulf states.

Qatar’s ruling Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani hosted the UAE's National Security Adviser Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al-Nahyan for a meeting, the state news agencies of both countries said on Thursday.

"The bilateral relations between the two countries and ways of developing and strengthening them in various fields were reviewed, in addition to discussing a number of issues of common interest," Qatar's news agency said.

The UAE's official news agency reported that the "Emir of Qatar received a delegation headed by Sheikh Tahnoun", adding that they had discussed cooperation "in the economic and trade fields and vital investment projects".

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Al-Nahyan is a brother of Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, who is considered to be the UAE’s de facto leader.

On Wednesday, the Qatari emir sent a letter to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman as he welcomed Qatar's Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammad bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani to NEOM to discuss regional developments.

The former foes signed an amended protocol for the establishment of the Qatari-Saudi Cooperation Council during a meeting at the NEOM megacity project in northwestern Saudi Arabia.

Earlier this month, Qatar appointed an ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, and Bahrain resolved in January to restore political, trade, and travel ties that were severed in 2017 over charges that Qatar supported terrorism, which Doha denies.

Saudi Arabia and Egypt have both re-established diplomatic ties with Qatar, but the UAE and Bahrain are yet to do so. All but Bahrain have restored trade and travel links.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE have sought to contain regional tensions, including with their rival Iran, as the United States - on which they have long relied on for security - reduces its military involvement in the wider region.