President Barzani Strengthens Ties with Gulf States
Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani visited Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) last week. The President met with top officials of the two countries, aiming to strengthen mutual relations.
President Barzani arrived in Riyadh on Monday. On Tuesday afternoon, he met Saudi Arabia King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud. It was his first visit since January 23, after the death of former Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud.
Hussein Shammari, head of the Political Research Institute in Baghdad, told media that President Barzani’s visit to Gulf States was a step to prepare the ground for the announcement of Kurdish independent state.
Shammari issued a statement, claiming that Barzani’s visit to the Gulf aimed to solicit “the support of different countries in declaring an independent state.”
Officials from both sides stressed that the meetings also emphasized increased investment in the Kurdistan Region.
Barzani met Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, on Sunday, November 29th. In the meeting, the pair discussed economic ties between the Kurdistan Region and UAE along with the current situation in Iraq and Syria.
During Barzani’s visit to UAE, he also attended the Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Yas Marina Circuit.