UAE supports efforts to reduce tensions with Iran

Gulf states led by UAE, Saudi Arabia seek to stabilise region to prevent it from falling into chaos despite Iranian attempts to thwart efforts.

LONDON - UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said on Tuesday that his country supported calm with Iran and the need to reach a political solution, but indicated that "Iran cannot achieve what it wants through its provocative activities.”

Gulf states, led by the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, are seeking to stabilise the region and prevent it from falling into chaos, but Iran is trying to thwart all these efforts by inciting its armed groups to carry out attacks in a number of countries.

Gargash added, in a meeting of the Emirates Society in London, that preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons under the Vienna nuclear deal was not enough, stressing that the agreement failed to compel Iran to abandon its destructive activities.

In an attempt to overcome the impasse, Iran has tried to change its tone towards Saudi Arabia and the UAE by sending messages indicating its relentless pursuit of mediation.

In a contrast to the tone that the world is accustomed to hearing from Iranian officials, who have been devoted to showing hostility towards anyone who objected to the threats of the regime in Tehran, the Iranian ambassador to Iraq, Erj Masjedi, admitted on Tuesday that his country sought to resolve differences with Saudi Arabia and the UAE "as soon as possible”.

Iran's return to talk of "peace" with Saudi Arabia and the UAE reflects the size of the dilemma facing the Islamic Republic but the practices of its proxies on the ground tell a different tale.

Iran continues to support armed groups such as the Huthi rebels in Yemen, Hezbollah in Lebanon, Iraqi militias, as well as sectarian groups in Syria.

Gargash stressed that the Arab coalition intervened in Yemen to prevent it from falling into the sphere of Iranian influence and that this matter contributed to countering Iranian interference.