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Israel has named its chargé d’affaires to the UAE Eitan Naeh as its first ambassador to Bahrain. Naeh has previously served as ambassador to Turkey and was named as the temporary head of mission to Abu Dhabi in January.

United Arab Emirates (UAE) | Bahrain | Israel
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Ajman Ruler Sheikh Humaid Bin Rashid Al-Nuaimi marked the 40th anniversary of his assumption of power on 6 September. Sheikh Humaid succeeded his father Sheikh Rashid Bin Humaid Al-Nuaimi, who ruled the emirate for 54 years until his death at the age of 79 in 1981. Humaid, who was born in 1933 and educated locally and in Cairo, had been crown prince since 1960.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Issue 1134 - 30 September 2021

UAE: Update on Indian Ocean relief effort

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Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) chairman and ruler’s representative in Al-Dhafra Region Sheikh Hamdan Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan had a 20 September phone briefing on UAE-funded projects in the Comoros Islands.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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Sheikh Ahmed Abdullah Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah has been appointed to head Crown Prince Mishaal Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s diwan.

Kuwait
Issue 1134 - 30 September 2021

Qatar: Hind Bint Hamad's Hamburg triathlon

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Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani’s sister Sheikha Hind took part in the mid-September Hamburg Wasser World Triathlon Championship. Hind wrote in an Instagram post that she had been inspired by seeing an event take place outside her hospital window when her baby daughter was born in June 2011.

Qatar
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An investment fund linked to Qatar’s Ministry of Defence has taken an equity stake in Aeralis, becoming the second largest shareholder in the UK military jet developer.

Qatar
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The last stretch of tarmac on a 720km road linking Ibri in Oman with Al-Ahsa in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province was completed on 14 September, suggesting that the new crossing will open as planned before end-2021.

Saudi Arabia | Oman
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Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s favoured vehicle the Public Investment Fund (PIF) is to acquire a 25% stake in Emaar, the Economic City, to settle a debt of SR2.8bn ($755m) that the master developer of King Abdullah Economic City owed to the Saudi sovereign wealth fund.

Saudi Arabia
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London Stock Exchange-listed Petrofac has admitted seven counts of failing to prevent bribery in relation to contracts awarded in 2012-15 in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, contrary to Section 7 of the UK Bribery Act 2010.

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UK-registered company Lex Foundation, of which Prince Abdelaziz Bin Nawaf Bin Abdelaziz was recorded as a director for nearly two years, has brought a claim in the Commercial Court in London against Citigroup. Lex Foundation and its current director, British Cypriot national Olgun Halil Shah, claiming Citibank lost €10bn ($11.6bn) transferred from Deutsche Bank to an account at Citi.

Saudi Arabia
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The Gulf Co-operation Council is to launch formal negotiations on a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United Kingdom in 2022, according to an 8 October British government statement. The GCC negotiating team will be led by Saudi Arabia’s Abdulraham Ahmed Al-Harbi.

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The UN Human Rights Council voted to end the Group of Eminent Experts (GEE) on Yemen’s mandate on 7 October. The GEE was set up in 2017 to investigate war crimes by all sides in the conflict; it has repeatedly found that air strikes by the Saudi-led coalition and actions by the Houthis may amount to war crimes.

Bahrain | Yemen
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Challenged by years of drift even before Covid-19 had a heavy impact on its economy, Oman has sought to revitalise its hydrocarbons industries since Sultan Haitham Bin Tariq Al-Said came to power. Institutions have been reconfigured and some big players continue to invest in gas, but overall the results are mixed.

Oman
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A flurry of political activity in the past two weeks has seen a much-anticipated amnesty for political figures move forward, quickly followed by the resignation of the government. However, the opposition camp appears divided and it remains to be seen if the relationship between the National Assembly (parliament) and the executive will fundamentally change.

Kuwait
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Deputy foreign minister Ali Bagheri-Kani – also chief negotiator on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal – was due to hold talks with the UK’s Middle East and North Africa minister James Cleverly in London on 11 November as GSN was going to press.

Iran