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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 December 2018

Saudi-UAE relations 'strong and strategic' on Mohammed bin Salman visit

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince attends the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix during the UAE leg of his regional tour

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed receives Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the Presidential Airport in Abu Dhabi on Thursday. Ryan Carter / Ministry of Presidential Affairs
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed receives Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the Presidential Airport in Abu Dhabi on Thursday. Ryan Carter / Ministry of Presidential Affairs

The official visit of Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince has signalled a new era of continuous integration and consultation between the two countries.

Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of the National Media Council said that the UAE-Saudi relations are 'strong and strategic' in various fields and ties have been given special attention and care by the leaderships of both countries.

"We believe that the relations of affection and brotherhood between our two countries are deep-rooted and supported by a shared vision aimed at development of our countries in the best interest of our brotherly peoples," he said.

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"The two leaderships have the aspiration and wisdom to pursue the path of development, building and prosperity for the peoples of the two countries, in particular, and the region in general."

Abu Dhabi is the first stop on Prince Mohammed's regional tour. He is expected to visit Bahrain, Egypt and Tunisia. He is also due to travel to Argentina to attend the G20 summit at the end of the month.

The Crown Prince was spotted at Yas Marina Circuit enjoying the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix following talks with UAE leaders on regional security.

A photograph of Prince Mohammed bin Salman with the nephew of the murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi is circulating on Instagram and Twitter.

“The Crown Prince is a dream for our young generation,” Mohammed Khashoggi told the Saudi Arabic-language newspaper Okaz after the photo was released.

He added that the accidental meeting on Yas Island was wonderful. Prince Mohammed greeted him by saying, “welcome to your second country, the Emirates.”

Prince Mohammed received a warm welcome at the Presidential Airport on Thursday from Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

He was honoured with a 21-artillery gun salute. The pair discussed “brotherly and strategic ties” at talks attended by sheikhs, princes, senior officials and ministers, including the Saudi head of general intelligence and the interior minister.

The leaders discussed threats and challenges faced by the Middle East and their impact on national stability and security.

The Arabic hashtag, “Crown Prince in Abu Dhabi” is trending on Twitter in the UAE. The Arabic hashtag “Mohammed bin Salman honours the UAE” was trending at his arrival.