US top diplomat Antony Blinken arrives in Morocco

Mr Antony Blinken waves as he boards his flight to Morocco in the Negev desert in Israel on March 28, 2022. PHOTO: AFP

RABAT, MOROCCO (AFP) - United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Morocco on Monday (March 28) to meet senior officials and hold talks with the United Arab Emirates' de facto leader, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan.

Mr Blinken flew in from Israel, where he joined a historic meeting of fellow top diplomats from the Jewish state, UAE, Morocco, Bahrain and Egypt. The meeting underlined the recent positive shift in relations between Arab countries and Israel.

US officials said talks in Morocco on Tuesday, and in a follow-up stop on Wednesday in Algeria, would deal with development issues, as well as the economic fallout from the Ukraine war, which has impacted food supplies for major grain importers in the region.

Discussions were also expected to address cooperation on confronting the continued threat from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria group and Al-Qaeda affiliates in the Sahel region.

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