UAE expresses ‘concern’ about Iraqi cleric’s statement on Bahrain

Iraqi cleric Muqtada Al-Sadr reportedly “defamed” Bahrain’s leadership



The UAE is following with “great concern and anxiety” the statements issued by Iraq regarding Bahrain and its leadership, the country’s ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has said.

“The interference in the internal affairs of Bahrain and any contempt or breach of the status of its leadership is objectionable meddling that can never be accepted,” official news agency WAM quoted the ministry as saying.

On Sunday, Bahrain strongly condemned a statement made by Iraqi cleric Muqtada Al-Sadr in which he reportedly “defamed” Bahrain’s leadership, according to the official Bahrain News Agency (BNA).

Bahrain said it considered the statement as an “unacceptable insult to the kingdom of Bahrain and its leadership, a blatant interference in the country’s internal affairs, an obvious violation of international law and conventions and an abuse of the nature of relations between Bahrain and Iraq.”

The UAE’s foreign ministry reiterated that “any failure in containing the abuse in relations between sisterly countries will lead to widening the gap and heightening tension in a time we are in a dire need for cooperation and for respecting national sovereignty and adhering to the principle of non-intervention.”

“Within this context, we are urging our brothers in Iraq to commit to the principles of respect for sovereignty and non-intervention in order to strengthen Arab links and contribute to deepening stability in the region,” it added.

Meanwhile a source at Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry said the kingdom would not interfere in the internal affairs of Bahrain.

The source said the kingdom was urging for a “strong relationship between Bahrain and Iraq, who contribute to regional security and stability”, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.