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Italy lifts arms sales embargo on the UAE

April 18, 2023 at 9:17 am

President of United Arab Emirates (UAE) Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan receives Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on March 4, 2023 [UAE Presidential Court/Anadolu Agency]

Italy yesterday lifted the embargo it placed on arms sales to the UAE given the latter’s declining presence in Yemen.

An official statement from the Italian government stated that the decision to lift the ban was made during a cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, according to the Italian news agency ANSA.

The decision was issued after listening to a detailed report from the minister of foreign affairs and international cooperation.

The statement said: “The export of armament materiel to the United Arab Emirates no longer falls under the prohibitions established by Article 1, paragraphs 5 and 6, of Law no. 185 of 9 July 1990.”

The statement indicated that the UAE’s military presence in Yemen has declined since April 2022, while its diplomatic activities have intensified.

In 2021, the Italian government, led by then Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, halted arms sales to the UAE under the pretext of its “involvement in Yemen.”

Yemen has witnessed a war since 2014 between government forces, backed by an Arab coalition led by Saudi Arabia, and the Iran-aligned Houthi group, after the Houthis seized large parts of the country, including the capital, Sanaa.

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