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As ties warm, Erdogan pays condolence visit to UAE

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, left, and Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, center, walk before a meeting in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, May 17, 2022. (Turkish Presidency via AP)
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, left, and Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, center, walk before a meeting in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, May 17, 2022. (Turkish Presidency via AP)

Turkey’s president visits the United Arab Emirates to pay respects to the federation’s late ruler and congratulate his successor, deepening a rapprochement between the countries after a bitter rivalry in the wake of the 2011 Arab uprisings.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan praises Abu Dhabi’s ruler Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on his elevation to power after nearly a decade as de facto leader. From a gleaming reception hall at Abu Dhabi airport, he offers condolences on the death of the long-ailing late UAE president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Turkish government says.

In a scene unthinkable just a decade ago as ties between the countries frayed over Turkey’s support for Islamist groups around the Middle East, Erdogan pulls Sheikh Mohamed in for a big hug.

Erdogan’s trip today marks his second to the UAE this year as Turkey, diplomatically isolated and in desperate need of foreign currency and investment, seeks to mend fences with old foes — including most recently with Saudi Arabia.

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