Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has met Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum in Dubai, the Syrian presidency said in a statement, in his first visit to an Arab state since the Syrian war began in 2011.
Assad has also met Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the state news agencies of the United Arab Emirates and Syria reported on Friday.
When asked about Assad’s visit to the UAE, US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said Washington was “profoundly disappointed and troubled by this apparent attempt to legitimise Bashar al-Assad, who remains responsible and accountable for the death and suffering of countless Syrians, the displacement of more than half of the pre-war Syrian population, and the arbitrary detention and disappearance of over 150,000 Syrian men, women and children.”
Al Jazeera’s Zeina Khodr reports.
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