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Acting defence minister holds talks with UAE president

AT

Kabul: Mullah Yaqoob, Afghan acting defence minister has met the president of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed al-Nahyan, for talks in Abu Dhabi on strengthening relations, the ministry and UAE state media reported on Monday.

They discussed “strengthening relations, bilateral cooperation between the UAE and Afghanistan and other important issues”, the Afghan defence ministry said in a statement on Monday.

The meeting with the UAE president comes after the Taliban, in September, signed a final contract for running Afghanistan’s airports with the UAE company GAAC Holding, which had beat out rival bids from Qatar and Turkey.

Anas Haqqani, a senior Taliban member, also accompanies Mullah Ya’qub on the trip.

In a conversation with National Radio Television, Haqqani said the purpose of traveling to the United Arab Emirates was to talk about the problems of Afghans residing in the country.

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