World leaders pay respects in UAE after demise of pro-West president By Reuters

DUBAI (Reuters) – World leaders started descending on the United Arab Emirates on Sunday to supply condolences on the demise of President Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan, who was succeeded by his half-brother and de facto chief Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed.

Sheikh Mohammed, now ruler of rich Abu Dhabi emirate, steered the Western-allied Gulf state, an OPEC oil producer and regional enterprise hub, for years earlier than being elected the UAE’s third president by a federal supreme council on Saturday.

French President Emmanuel Macron, whose nation holds profitable enterprise and navy ties with the UAE, arrived in Abu Dhabi and in a Twitter (NYSE:) submit paid tribute to Sheikh Khalifa’s “values of peace, openness and dialogue”.

The president of Israel, with which the UAE solid ties two years in the past in a significant realignment of the Center East, drawing Palestinian ire, was additionally due on Sunday as was the Palestinian president and Britain’s prime minister.

U.S. President Joe Biden, whose administration has had fraught ties with the UAE and Saudi Arabia, might be represented by Vice President Kamala Harris, as a result of go to on Monday.

A number of Arab leaders, together with Jordan’s king and Egypt’s president, paid respects on Saturday. Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, whose father King Salman entered hospital every week in the past, despatched a delegation.

Sheikh Mohammed, generally known as MbZ, has been a driving drive in Center East politics, championing Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman within the West as he rose to energy and combating political Islam, seen as a risk to Gulf dynastic rule, across the area.

MbZ deepened ties with Russia and China as Gulf states more and more questioned the regional dedication of conventional safety guarantor america. Strains in U.S.-Emirati ties had been highlighted by the Ukraine battle as Gulf states refused to aspect with Western allies in isolating Russia.

After years of enmity Abu Dhabi has additionally moved to interact with Iran and Turkey because the UAE doubles down on financial progress amid rising regional competitors and a world push away from hydrocarbons, the lifeblood of Gulf economies.

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