Rapid growth in UAE-China bonds over the recent years have pushed investment and trade exchange to more than $32 billion last year, Abdul Rahman Mohammed Al Owais, Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development, said.
Al Owais told the fifth session of the ministerial meeting of the Arab-Sino Cooperation Forum themed ‘Deepening Strategic Cooperation and Supporting Joint Development,’ in Tunisia that “bonds between Arab countries and China have also seen remarkable progress following the declaration of strategic Arab-Sino cooperation in 2010.
“The UAE is committed to all principles that govern relations between states particularly respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity of states, non-interference into others’ internal affairs, settlement of disputes through peaceful means and rejection of foreign occupation. Based on these principles, the UAE has completely refused the visit made by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the UAE occupied island of Abu Musa on April 11 . The visit doesn’t change the historic facts and legal status which prove the UAE’s sovereignty over these islands.
He added the UAE had made tremendous efforts to build confidence out of its belief in adopting peaceful ways to solve the issue, sustain historic ties and good neighbourhood with Iran and to enhance security and stability in the region.
“We call on Iran to respond to the UAE’s sincere calls for finding a peaceful, fair solution to the issue of UAE occupied islands (Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Musa) either through direct bilateral negotiations or recourse to the International Court of Justice,” the UAE minister added.
On the latest developments in Syria, Al Owais said “We back Arab and international efforts to provide necessary support for the mission of the Joint Arab-UN envoy to Syria, Kofi Anan, and his six-point plan to find a peaceful solution to the situation in Syria.
“We hope that all Syrian concerned parties will shoulder their national responsibilities with complete transparency with regards to their commitments and obligations so as to realise legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people and restore security and stability in all corners of Syria,” Al Owais said.
He condemned the savage massacre committed against innocent children and civilians in Houla as a flagrant breach of humanitarian norms and values and appealed to the international community to provide protection to innocent civilians in Syria. Al Owais urged delegates to support the UAE’s bid to host Expo 2020 in Dubai for the sake of promoting friendship and interaction among nations of the world.