x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

UAE urges Iran to find 'peaceful resolution' on islands row

Dr Anwar Gargash urged Iran "to find a peaceful and just resolution to the issue" over the ownership of islands Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs.

ABU DHABI // The UAE yesterday again called on Iran to seek a resolution to the long dispute over the islands of Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs.

Dr Anwar Gargash, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, urged Iran "to find a peaceful and just resolution to the issue" during a speech at the Non-Aligned Movement Summit in Tehran.

"The UAE is committed to all the principles on which the Non-Aligned Movement was established, in particular respecting of states, settlement of conflicts through peaceful means as well as the rejection of foreign occupation," Dr Gargash said.

Iran invaded and occupied the islands, close to the strategically important shipping lanes of the Strait of Hormuz, in 1971 as the UAE was founded.

The minister also stressed the need for a peaceful transition in Syria "to protect its security, stability and unity".

"The UAE has been following with concern the developments in the Syrian crisis and call for a halt to the killing of Syrian brothers all over Syria by the regime's heavy weapons including tanks, artillery and military aircraft," Dr Gargash said.

The UAE also backs the appointment of the UN Syria envoy Lakhdar Brahimi and "underscores the need for a new strategy and a clearly defined plan aimed at achieving a peaceful transition in Syria".

The summit will continue until tomorrow. According to Wam, the state news agency, the UAE delegation was led by Sheikh Saud bin Rashid Al Mualla, a Supreme Council member and Ruler of Umm Al Quwain.