French President Macron will visit the United Arab Emirates to mourn the death of Sheikh Khalifa

French President Emmanuel Macron announced a trip to the United Arab Emirates to mourn the death of Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and show support for the ruling family, with whom France has commercial and military ties.

Macron will travel to the United Arab Emirates on Sunday, his administration said in a statement, to pay tribute to Sheikh Khalifa, who died on Friday, and “express support for his brother Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed and the rest.” of the family, and all the Emir people.

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Sheikh Khalifa, president of the United Arab Emirates since 2004, has further aligned the Gulf state with the West. He was buried and funeral prayers were held on Friday.

France considers the main oil producer, the UAE, a strategic partner in the region, and commercial ties, which include the delivery of military equipment and energy infrastructure, have been strengthened during Macron’s first presidential term.

During a high-profile visit to Dubai in November, Macron displayed a good relationship with Crown Prince Mohammed, and business delegations from both states signed a series of important deals.

The United Arab Emirates has ordered 80 Rafale fighter jets from Dassault Aviation and 12 military helicopters through a €17 billion ($19.2 billion) arms deal, which the French say will secure thousands of local jobs.

French energy giants TotalEnergies and Engie also won multibillion-euro deals.

Paris has a permanent military base in the Emirati capital.

Read more:

“His legacy will live on”, world leaders pay tribute to Sheikh Khalifa of the United Arab Emirates

‘Great loss’: Top US officials mourn UAE’s Sheikh Khalifa

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed: UAE ‘lost its righteous son’ after Sheikh Khalifa’s death

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