UAE recalls ambassador to Sweden in wake of Saudi dispute

Ministry of Foreign Affairs recalls Sultan Rashid Al Kaitoob in support of Saudi Arabia after 'offending remarks' by Swedish official
UAE recalls ambassador to Sweden in wake of Saudi dispute
Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom. (Getty Images)
By Staff writer
Wed 18 Mar 2015 08:53 PM

The UAE has recalled its ambassador to Sweden, a week after Saudi Arabia made the same move.

The UAE's Ministry of Foreign Affairs recalled Sultan Rashid Al Kaitoob in the wake of "offending remarks" by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sweden Margot Wallstrom, news agency WAM said.

Last week the UAE's larger neighbour Saudi Arabia recalled its own envoy to Stockholm after branding Swedish criticism of its human rights record as "interference in its internal affairs".

The UAE's Ministry of Foreign Affairs also summoned the Ambassador of Sweden to the UAE, Jan Thesleff, to "deliver a formal memorandum of protest, following the abusive remarks" by Wallstrom against Saudi Arabia.

Dr Anwar Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, referred in a statement to the "condemnation by the United Arab Emirates of strong statements made by the Foreign Minister of Sweden to the Swedish Parliament against Saudi Arabia and its judicial system."

The Minister was quoted by WAM as saying that "these statements violate the principle of sovereignty upon which the normal relations between countries are based", adding that such remarks are deemed interference in internal affairs.

Sweden last week cancelled a long-standing defence cooperation agreement with Saudi Arabia. That followed Saudi Arabia's decision to block a speech due to be given by Wallstrom to the League of Arab States this week.

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