In this file photo dated Sept 30, 2014, Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani speaks during a press conference in Damascus, Syria. (PHOTO / XINHUA)
DUBAI — Iran's Supreme National Security Council secretary Ali Shamkhani will visit the United Arab Emirates on Thursday, Nour News, which is affiliated with the Iranian top security body, reported on Wednesday.
His visit to Abu Dhabi comes at a time of growing rapprochement between Iran and Gulf countries. Last week, Shamkhani took part in talks brokered by China that resulted in Saudi Arabia and Iran resuming diplomatic ties after they were suspended in 2016.
The UAE downgraded its ties with Iran after Saudi Arabia severed its relations with Iran in January 2016 following the storming of the Saudi embassy in Tehran by Iranian protesters after Riyadh executed a prominent Shi'ite cleric
The United Arab Emirates sent an ambassador back to Iran in September, more than six years after the Gulf Arab state downgraded ties with the Islamic Republic.
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"Shamkhani will travel to Abu Dhabi on Thursday in response to an official invitation by his Emirati counterpart Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan to discuss bilateral, regional, and international issues," Nour News said.
"Top economic, banking and security officials will accompany the Supreme National Security Council secretary to the UAE," it added.
The UAE downgraded its ties with Iran after Saudi Arabia severed its relations with Iran in January 2016 following the storming of the Saudi embassy in Tehran by Iranian protesters after Riyadh executed a prominent Shi'ite cleric.
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The UAE has business and trade ties with Iran stretching back more than a century, with the Dubai emirate long being one of Iran's main links to the outside world.