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Iran, UAE can take ‘big steps’ in cooperation, diplomacy: Iranian FM

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Iran and the UAE can take “big steps” in cooperation and realizing diplomacy between two neighboring countries, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said on Tuesday.

His comments come days after his meeting with UAE's Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, on the sidelines of a summit in Baghdad on Saturday.

Abdollahian described his conversation with Sheikh Mohammed as “positive and cordial.”

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He said in a tweet: “I had a positive and cordial conversation with Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid. Iran and the UAE can take big steps towards cooperation and the realization of neighborhood policy and diplomacy.”

He added: “We spoke about positive intentions and the will of the leaders of the two countries to strengthen relations and emphasized fraternal ties.”

Amir-Abdollahian stressed that “working with neighbors” to achieve regional cooperation was a priority for President Ebrahim Raisi’s new government.

The UAE, along with other Gulf countries, have long said Iran needed to stop its malign activities in the region through providing financial and military support to its network of proxy militias across the Middle East.

The Gulf countries have also sought to bolster their defense capabilities with US arms purchases to protect themselves against the threat posed by Iran.

The new Iranian administration under the presidency of Raisi and his top diplomat Amir-Abdollahian is expected to be a strictly hardline regime with analysts expecting rigid foreign policy to serve the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei’s vision of Iran’s place in the region’s strategic landscape.

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