Iran names envoy to UAE after nearly eight-year absence as ties thaw

Reza Ameri, former Iranian ambassador in Algeria, Sudan and Eritrea, to take up post in Abu Dhabi, after rapprochement between Riyadh and Tehran

Reza Ameri, Iran's new ambassador to the United Arab Emirates. (Wikipedia; CC BY-SA 4.0)
Reza Ameri, Iran's new ambassador to the United Arab Emirates. (Wikipedia; CC BY-SA 4.0)

TEHRAN, Iran — Iran has named an ambassador to the United Arab Emirates nearly eight years after his predecessor left, as a thaw in relations with the Gulf Arab states picks up pace.

“After some eight years, the Foreign Ministry has named Reza Ameri as the Islamic Republic of Iran’s new ambassador to the United Arab Emirates,” Iran’s official IRNA news agency reported late Tuesday.

The move comes after Iran welcomed an Emirati ambassador last September, ending a six-year absence.

The UAE had cut the level of its diplomatic representation after neighboring Saudi Arabia severed ties with Iran in 2016 following the ransacking of the Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran by protesters angered by its execution of a leading Shiite cleric.

After several of its Gulf allies led the way, Riyadh restored diplomatic relations with Tehran last month in a fence-mending deal brokered by Beijing. The Sunni-led Saudi Arabia and Shi’ite Iran are regional rivals.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has accepted an invitation to Riyadh from Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, First Vice President Mohammad Mokhber confirmed on Monday.

Iran and the United Arab Emirates have long had close economic ties which continued even during the diplomatic chill.

A veteran diplomat who served most recently as director general of the foreign ministry’s diaspora affairs department, Ameri’s career had previously taken him to Algeria, Sudan and Eritrea.

Most Popular
read more: