Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani has reportedly visited the United Arab Emirates (UAE) eight times since assuming office back in 2014 and now it has attracted widespread speculation over the nature of these trips. According to international media reports, Ghani was also accompanied by his security chiefs including National Security Advisor, the head of National Directorate of Security (NDS) and the state minister on peace affairs, Abdul Salam Rahimi. The Presidential Palace has reportedly claimed that these frequent trips were aimed to further boost economic and political cooperation between the two countries.
The spokesperson for Ghani, Sediq Sediqqi told the media outlet that Afghanistan need to have very close relations with the UAE to enhance the business ties and find markets for their products. However, the head of Nahzat-e-Hambastagi Afghanistan party, Sayed Eshaq Gailani reportedly said that there is a possibility that the trips were made as part of some secretive discussions as it is certain that the trips bought nothing for Afghanistan.
According to international media reports, UAE was one of the first governments that officially recognised the Taliban as the relations between the country and the Taliban have faced challenges following the killing of UAE diplomats in Kandahar city back in 2017. However, UAE as a member of Arab union that is geographically located in the Middle East is considerate to its neighbours and plays a significant role in matters concerning the International community as a whole in the region. UAE and Afghanistan relations have also been greatly influenced by the UAE foreign policy and there are bilateral relations between the two countries as well.
Since 2006, UAE has also played a more direct role in Afghanistan through its embassy in Kabul and due to Afghanistan's security situation, the UAE also has a military presence in the country in line with its policy of maintaining regional security and human dignity. Furthermore, UAE also provides humanitarian relief to Afghanistan's population by setting up hospitals, schools and religious centres all reportedly aimed at promoting human dignity. Recently, Ghani also attended the 10th World Urban Forum, in UAE as well.
H.E. President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani attended the 10th World Urban Forum, which was organized and convened by UN-Habitat on February 9th in Abu Dhabi, UAE. pic.twitter.com/uNvFQpIG3O— Abdul Farid Zikria (@af_zikria) February 11, 2020