Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi, UAE Minister of State for Defense Affairs, received Juri Luik, Estonian Minister of Defense, in Abu Dhabi Tuesday.
During the meeting, they discussed defense cooperation relations between the UAE and the Republic of Estonia, as well as ways to develop and strengthen them.
The two sides also reviewed a number of regional and international issues of common concern and exchanged views on them, according to Emirates news agency WAM.
Al Bowardi lauded the visit of the Estonian Defense Minister to the UAE and his keenness to deepen the bonds of military and defense cooperation.
The meeting was attended by a number of senior officers and officials in the ministry and the armed forces, as well as the delegation accompanying the guest
In another development, the UAE participated in a meeting of member countries of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction.
The meeting took place in Geneva, Switzerland on Monday.
The UAE delegation was headed by Obaid Salem Al Zaabi, UAE Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva and Other International Organizations in Switzerland, and included representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Ministry of Defense, the Armed Forces, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Health and Prevention, and the Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre.
During the meeting, Al Zaabi delivered a speech stressing the UAE’s keenness to cooperate with the Convention’s support unit while calling upon its member states to promote confidence-building measures.
He also explained the UAE’s work to improve its biological security systems, noting that the country established in 2012 the National Committee for Biosecurity and drafted and implemented a national biological security strategy.
Al Zaabi affirmed that the strategy’s goals and sub-initiatives support the country’s efforts to strengthen biological security, stressing that the UAE is working with full transparency to facilitate the exchange of relevant scientific equipment, materials, and information according to Article No. 10 of the Convention.
The UAE has established and operates a Biosafety Level 3 laboratory to research infectious diseases in line with best practices in the field of biological security, he added.
Al Zaabi highlighted that the UAE drafted the National Action Plan for Health Security 2019-2023 in cooperation with the World Health Organization and other relevant national authorities, and in February 2019, a workshop was held with the participation of the WHO and relevant partners, including various government authorities.