Putting rumours to rest, Emirati ministry says regional situation will not affect UAE

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The United Arab Emirates confirmed on Wednesday that recent escalation in tensions in the region will not affect citizens, residents, or visitors to the country.

According to the Khaleej Times, the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has stressed the importance of dialogue and political solutions in the current situation, while adding that it is closely following regional developments, and reaffirmed the importance of deescalating current tensions.

The clarification came in the face of rumours regarding countries like the United Kingdom and United States updating their travel advisories for UAE, warning visitors to return back home.

Upon investigation, UAE-based The National found that no such updates have been made to the countries’ travel advisories.

According to The National, a spokeswoman for the US embassy in the UAE said that “the US security posture in the UAE has not changed”.

Dubai Media Office also debunked the rumours regarding security threats targeting Dubai in a tweet and said that these “haven’t been issued from any official source in the Iranian Government.”

“We urge everyone to refrain from circulating fake news and spreading rumours,” the media office further urged.

The UK foreign office has also advised citizens to be vary of the security situation in the region, “following the death of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in a US strike in Baghdad on 3 January. There is a possibility of an increased threat against western interests and the security situation could worsen with little warning. You should remain vigilant and keep up to date with the latest developments.” However, there are no specific mentions of UAE in the travel warning

Earlier today, Iran launched missile attacks on US-led forces in Iraq, in the early hours of Wednesday, in retaliation of the US drone strike on General Soleimani, further escalating tensions in the region.

Tehran fired more than a dozen ballistic missiles from Iranian territory aimed at least two Iraqi military bases hosting US-led coalition personnel at about 1:30am local time, the US military said.

Iraq’s military said 22 missiles were launched on the Ain al-Asad air base in western Anbar province and a base in the Iraqi Kurdish capital Erbil, causing no casualties among Iraqi forces. According to Iranian state television, 80 “American terrorists” were killed in the missile attack, adding that none of the missiles were intercepted.

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