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UAE diplomat Gargash replaced in Cabinet reshuffle

Gargash will serve as diplomatic adviser to the Emirati president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
UAE's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash speaks during a press conference in Sudan's capital Khartoum on January 14, 2020. - Gargash arrived in Sudan for a two-day visit. (Photo by ASHRAF SHAZLY / AFP) (Photo by ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP via Getty Images)

Veteran diplomat Anwar Gargash has been replaced as the United Arab Emirates’ minister of state for foreign affairs in a “small Cabinet reshuffle,” 

Gargash, 61, will now serve as a diplomatic adviser to UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Emirati government announced Wednesday. Sheikh Shakhbout bin Nahyan, who previously served as the UAE’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, will replace Gargash at the ministry. 

Gargash was a key player in the Gulf country’s efforts to normalize relations with Israel under the US-brokered Abraham Accords, and was also involved in the UAE’s recent warming of ties with Qatar.  

Before serving in government, Gargash was a professor of political science at UAE National University. He was named minister of state for federal national council affairs in 2006, before his appointment as minister of state for foreign affairs two years later. 

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE's foreign minister and the UAE representative who signed the Abraham Accords, tweeted that Gargash would be missed at the ministry and thanked him for "everything that you taught me, which illuminated my road.” 

“No words can thank you enough for what you have contributed to our beloved country and to each member of your team,” tweeted ministry spokesperson Hend al-Otaiba. “Blessed to have benefited from your extraordinary expertise and guidance.” 

The Emirati government has renamed the Emirates Diplomatic Academy the “Anwar Gargash Diplomatic Academy” in recognition of Gargash’s “dedication to serving the UAE, and his pioneering diplomatic efforts regionally and internationally.”

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