Special UAE-American Relations
- 21 February 2010
As part of its keenness to develop good relations at both regional and international levels and build foundations of mutual respect, equality and common interests, the UAE and its wise leadership attaches great importance to its ties with major powers across the world. On top of this is its relationship with the United States of America considering its positive influence all over the world and an image which makes it acceptable to everyone in the international arena. Seen in this context, the statement made by His Highness General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and President of ECSSR, during the reception ceremony held in honor of Admiral Michael Mullen, the US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, assumes major significance. He affirmed that the UAE, under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, is proud of the existing friendly relations with the United States and is keen to consolidate and develop this to meet the aspirations of the two countries and their friendly people.
The United States, for its part, has shown great interest in its relationship with the UAE and looks at the country as a force of stability in the region and an active participant in international affairs striving for regional and international peace and security. The United States appreciates the humanitarian and development initiatives launched by the UAE in areas of conflict – especially in Afghanistan – and its moderate and wise political approach in dealing with the different conflicts. This appreciation is reflected in Washington’s keenness to engage with the Emirati leadership in all areas of concern in the Gulf region in particular, and the Middle East in general.
There is no doubt that the Peaceful Nuclear Energy agreement between the UAE and the US, which came into effect in December 2009, and the American positions taken on its sidelines, reflects the positive American recognition of the UAE and its role. While approving the agreement American President, Barak Obama, affirmed that he has reached the conclusion that “the implementation of the agreement will strengthen the mutual defense and security” of the two countries, while the US Under-Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security called it “a new sample for the Middle East region.”
The deepening ties between the US and the UAE confirm that it is in their mutual interest and they are determined to go down the path of political and economic development as is reflected in the volume of trade between the two sides which reached $13 billion in 2008 making the US the third country in terms of relative importance for the UAE’s foreign trade. Such trade relations would go a long way in serving legitimate Arab causes of which the Palestinian issue is at the forefront. The UAE’s leadership is always keen to express the Arab vision for peace in their dialogues and interactions with the American administration which, in turn, shows great interest in the perceptions and ideas communicated by the UAE in areas of regional security and issues concerning the Middle East.