UAE summons Iraq ambassador over Saudi 'terrorism' charge

Reuters News
Posted: Mar 12, 2014 2:28 PM

DUBAI (Reuters) - The United Arab Emirates summoned Iraq's ambassador on Wednesday to protest against his prime minister's accusation that its ally Saudi Arabia was funding "terrorism", state new agency WAM reported.

Saudi Arabia has already rejected Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's assertion on Saturday that it and Qatar were funding Sunni Muslim insurgents fighting in Iraq's western Anbar province.

Maliki has long had chilly ties with Sunni-led Gulf Arab states, which in turn view him as too close to Shi'ite Muslim Iran.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said that Maliki's statements were "completely untrue and not based on any accurate assessment of the situation in the region with regards to terrorism," WAM reported.

"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia plays a prominent role in fighting terrorism in all its forms and manifestations," WAM quoted Gargash as saying.

Qatar has not commented on Maliki's remarks so far.

Iraqi forces have been fighting insurgents from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Anbar's two main cities since January 1.

(Reporting By Mirna Sleiman; editing by Rania El Gamal)