French president Emmanuel Macron toured a French naval base in Abu Dhabi on Thursday, a sign of Paris' deepening military and cultural ties to Abu Dhabi.
Mr Macron visited the naval base at Abu Dhabi's Port Zayed, which sits just across the waters of the Arabian Gulf from the new Louvre Abu Dhabi, which he helped inaugurate on Wednesday night.
A military band played
La Marseillaise and an honour guard met Mr Macron before he boarded and walked through the French frigate Jean Bart.
The French president later addressed gathered sailors there.
He described the base as a crucial part of France's battle against extremists like ISIL in the region, as well as the effort to stop smugglers and piracy in the Arabian Gulf and surrounding waters.
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He also applauded the cooperation the French military has throughout the region, specifically in the UAE.
Mr Macron's wife, Brigitte, meanwhile visited the capital's Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.
Brigitte Macron, the wife of the French president, visits the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. All photos by Giuseppe Cacace / AFP Photo
Mrs Macron looks a holy Quran.
Mrs Macron and her husband, the French president, helped open Louvre Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
A guide at the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque shows Mrs Macron a feature of the building.
Brigitte Macron, the wife of the French president, visits the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi on November 9, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Giuseppe CACACE
The French naval base opened in 2009 and shows France's deepening military cooperation with the UAE. It also stations soldiers and planes at Al Dhafra Air Base, home to some of the 5,000 American soldiers stationed in the country.