BRUSSELS, 26th April, 2016 (WAM) – Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy, and Vice-President of the European Commission, has received Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of the Federal National Council (FNC), at the headquarters of the European Commission in Brussels.

Dr. Al Qubaisi is paying an official visit to Belgium, heading the parliamentary delegation.

The meeting was attended from the UAE side by Abdul Aziz Abdullah Al Zaabi, Second Deputy Speaker of the FNC; Dr. Saeed Al Mutawa, Abdul Rahman Al Shamsi, Assistant Secretary-General for Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs, Sulaiman Hamid Al Mazrouei, Head of the UAE’s Mission to the European Union (EU), and Ambassador of the UAE to the Kingdom of Belgium, and Nabila Al Shamsi, Deputy Head of the UAE Mission. Meanwhile, on the European side, the meeting was attended by Mogherini’s senior aides.

During the meeting, they discussed ways to strengthen relations between the UAE and the EU. They also tackled areas of co-operation between the institutions in Europe and the UAE, as well as regional and international issues of common interest.

The two sides touched on possibilities and ways of increasing the volume of trade between the EU and the UAE, and consolidation of co-operation in important sectors such as small and medium-sized enterprises, renewable energy and the role of the business community on both sides to open new horizons for bilateral co-operation projects.

On behalf of the UAE leadership, government and people, the FNC speaker offered heartfelt condolences to the Belgian and French peoples over the victims of the recent terrorist attacks. She said the UAE denounced those attacks with the strongest possible terms. The UAE official called for concerted international efforts to counter all forms of the terrorism, which violate religious teachings. To eradicate this phenomenon, she continued, conflicts in some Arab countries, notably the standoff in Syria, must be settled.

The UAE official reiterated her country’s commitment to alleviating the suffering of Syrian refugees, citing the UAE leadership’s directives in this respect.

Mogherini congratulated Dr. Al Qubaisi on her election as the first female speaker in the Arab world, noting that the EU followed the historic event with admiration.

She said that the UAE- EU relations saw a remarkable growth in all fields, especially in the areas of economy, trade and investment.

At the end of the meeting, the FNC speaker invited Mogherini to visit the UAE.