UAE president tells Russia’s Putin: we wish to strengthen ties

DUBAI (Reuters): The president of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which has not joined Western sanctions against Moscow, told Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday that his nation wished to strengthen ties.

“I am pleased to be here today with you, your Excellency, and we wish to build on this relationship and we put our trust in you to do so,” Sheikh Mohammed told Putin on the sidelines of a forum in St. Petersburg on Friday.

The Middle East economic powerhouse has sought to maintain what it says is a neutral position on the Ukraine war.

“The UAE continues to support all efforts aimed at reaching a political solution through dialogue & diplomacy – towards global peace & stability,” Sheikh Mohammed tweeted after the meeting.

Putin had earlier thanked the president for his efforts on freeing prisoners of war in Ukraine.