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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 19 June 2018

British PM stands firm with Abu Dhabi over Qatar

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed and May agree ‘on importance of Qatar working with region to combat terrorism’

Theresa May reiterated the need for all sides to maintain dialogue and find a resolution to restore unity
Theresa May reiterated the need for all sides to maintain dialogue and find a resolution to restore unity

The British prime minister has assured Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, that Britain recognises that Qatar needs to work with its regional partners to combat terrorism and ensure stability in the Gulf.

In a telephone call to the Crown Prince on Tuesday afternoon, Theresa May reiterated the need for all sides to maintain dialogue and find a resolution to restore the unity of the GCC that was acceptable to all.

A statement from Downing Street said the prime minister welcomed the extra time given to Qatar to respond to the concerns raised by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain and was clear that the UK hoped negotiations would continue beyond Qatar's response to the 13 demands presented by its GCC neighbours and Egypt. The statement said ‘they agreed on the importance of Qatar working with its regional partners to combat terrorism and ensure stability in the Gulf’.

Sheikh Mohammed and Mrs May agreed that the threat of terrorism and violent extremism was one both countries shared, and that the UAE and Britain must continue working together - particularly in tackling the financing of terrorism and the spread of extremist ideology on the internet.

The prime minister also thanked Sheikh Mohammed for the messages of condolence and solidarity from the UAE after the recent terrorist attacks in the UK, and the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower in London.