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US role ‘more important than ever’ under Trump: UAE

JEDDAH: The UAE has urged President Donald Trump’s United States to develop a stronger strategy on the Middle East, after a “disconcerting vacuum” seen during Obama years.
Anwar Gargash, the country’s minister of state for foreign affairs, said that the influence of Washington in the region was “more important than ever.”
“Following eight years of weakened American engagement in the region, which many feel has created a disconcerting vacuum, it looks like we will have to wait a little longer until the contours of President-elect Trump’s approach to the region become clearer,” Gargash told the Third Abu Dhabi Strategic Debate in the UAE capital.
“It is essential that there is an overarching strategy rather than isolated positions toward regional issues. In short, America’s engagement is positive and its withdrawal and disengagement is counterproductive.”
He said that the stability of the Middle East “cannot rest on American engagement alone,” with the likes of Russia, China, India and the EU also having a role to play.
“But solving regional problems also requires an active role for the UN. This means that the international community has to reverse the failures of recent years, by providing a more activist and effective role,” Gargash said, according to the UAE state news agency WAM.
President Barack Obama administration’s policy in
withdrawing from the region has been “a recipe for unremitting chaos and violence,” Gargash added, pointing to crises in Iraq, Syria and Libya which have spiraled out of control and fueled extremism.

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