BRUSSELS, 28th April, 2016 (WAM) – Elmar Brok, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee at European Parliament (EP), has said that the UAE is a strategic partner to EU member states, and welcomed its co-operation with the EP given the country’s effective role regarding the Middle East issues.

This came during a meeting held by Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of the Federal National Council (FNC) with Brok.

During the meeting attended by Abdul Aziz Abdullah Al Zaabi, Second Deputy Speaker of the FNC; Ali Jassim; Afra Rashid Al Basti, and Dr. Saeed Al Mutawa; Sulaiman Hamid Al Mazrouei, Head of the UAE’s Mission to the European Union (EU), and UAE Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the two sides discussed the development and future government plans.

Dr. Al Qubaisi said the UAE leadership seeks to consolidate happiness, tolerance and peace as basic principles in the Arab region despite the instability being experienced by some neighbouring countries.

She offered condolences for the victims of the recent blasts in Paris and Brussels. She also expressed her sympathy with the families of the victims, stressing the importance of the international community to combat terrorism, eschew hate speech and encourage cultural dialogue.

The FNC speaker underlined that Islam should not be linked with the discourse of extremist groups, which seeks to revive the medieval era agenda.

Brok said he supports the viewpoints of the UAE regarding terrorism which should not be linked with Islam, pledging that he would convey the UAE’s ideas to EP members.

Regarding Iran’s interference in the Arab and Gulf region, the EP official said he urged Iranian officials, in a meeting, to cease conflicts and interference in the affairs of other countries.