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Anwar Gargash: UAE’s Active Minister | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash talks during a news conference in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, June 24, 2017. REUTERS/Abdel Hadi Ramahi

Dubai- UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash is very active on social media and has become a leading figure after the eruption of the political crisis with Qatar.

Gargash, who doesn’t like to give remarks to journalists and only resorts to press conferences, has found Twitter as an opportunity to express his opinion on a daily basis on political developments in the world.

Gargash, a politician, academic and a prominent businessman, was born in Dubai on March 28, 1959.

He spent his school years in Dubai and then traveled to the United States where he received a bachelor’s degree in 1981 and a master’s degree in 1984 in political science from George Washington University.

He later obtained a Ph.D. from King’s College of Britain’s Cambridge University in 1990.

Between 1990 and 1995, he was a faculty member at the United Arab Emirates University. He then moved to work in the private sector.

Gargash joined the government for the first time in 2006 when he was appointed as minister of state for federal national council affairs. In February 2008, he was also named as minister of state for foreign affairs.

Upon his appointment in 2006, the council held its first elections during which Gargash sought to implement the vision of UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

At the time, he said the vision aimed to consolidate participation and representation through the council.

Gargash says his government does not aim at playing a regional role. Rather, its foreign policy objective is to preserve the state entity in order to consolidate prosperity in the region that is engulfed in turmoil.

He also believes that his country’s role lies in creating a strong and stable system in the region to confront terrorism and extremism.

Gulf Cooperation Council Unity

Gargash is one of the staunchest supporters of GCC unity.

During speeches and several international conferences, he has been keen on such unity.

The minister is also aware that the region would not enjoy stability without Saudi Arabia. He has made that clear through several tweets.

Gargash has not only backed the Gulf unity, but he has also called for unity among Arabs. At an economic Arab summit in Kuwait in 2009, the minister said that Arab countries are able to break trade barriers and boost investment to consolidate the Arab economy.

Gargash has also had a prominent role in the Arab coalition to restore legitimacy in Yemen.

He has made his country’s stance clear regarding the operation via Twitter and has sent strong messages to Houthi insurgents and Saleh’s forces on their lost battle in Yemen.

Qatar Crisis

Lately, Gargash has had a prominent role in the boycott of Arab countries to Qatar.

His tweets to more than 400,000 followers have caught the eye of international media, which have been publishing his statements on an almost daily basis since the crisis erupted last month.

In his tweets, Gargash has called on Qatar to take the demands of the Arab countries seriously.

“As the hour of truth approaches, we call on the brother to choose his neighbours, choose honesty, truth and transparency in its dealings and to realize that the noise of the media and the heroism of ideology are just a passing illusion,” he recently tweeted.