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Dr Anwar Gargash speaking at a plenary session on ‘Are We Ready for a New World Order?’ at World Government Summit at Dubai Exhibition Centre, Expo 2020 Dubai Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Dubai: UAE’s intention is to find a way to work with Iran, a top official told the World Government Summit at Expo 2020 Dubai on Tuesday.

Dr Anwar Gargash, Diplomatic Adviser to the UAE President, said the world has gone through a difficult decade, and the UAE is reaching out to all sides in the region in a bid to reduce tensions.

“We are reaching out to friends and also adversaries and rebuilding bridges. We are not going to agree with everything they want to do. The Middle East is not only about Iran and Israel,” Dr Gargash said during a panel session on the first day of the summit.

He said the region needs to turn a page and reach out to everybody.

“Our whole intention is to find a way to functionally work with Iran and to make sure there is an agenda for stability and prosperity in the region including Iran and others.”

He said energy is also coming back as a major component in world discussions. “We should concentrate on food security, cybersecurity and more,” he added.

Dr Gargash also emphasized how technology has transformed our lives and international relations in the 21st century.

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(L to R) Moderator Becky Anderson, CNN; Dr Anwar Gargash, Diplomatic Advisor to the UAE President; Frederick Kempe, President and CEO, Atlantic Council; Pippa Malmgren, Economist and Former US Presidential Advisor; and George Friedman, Founder and Chairman of Geopolitical Futures Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Change of mind-set

“I think the frame of thinking is still in the 19th century, it is still about nationalism, use of force and sovereignty. The world is governing international relations with 19th century mode of thinking,” Gargash said.

He urged the Middle East region to catch up with other regions in the world by prioritising its own politics. “The region needs to catch up before being a major player in the world.”

Moreover, Dr Gargash said if conflict is allowed to last a long time then there will be an unstable region, such as what happened in Iraq and Syria and the emergence of ISIS.

“Ukraine will be a significant change in international war and have deep repercussions. We need to find political solutions and start with a cease-fire. We need to do that because the danger of horizontal escalation is real and we shouldn’t diminish [the risk] of this sort of escalation,” he added.

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Also speaking at the summit, Dr Pippa Malmgren, Economist and Former US Presidential Advisor, said during a panel discussion ‘Are we ready for new world order?’ that “the location of power will shift, and decentralisation of power will happen everywhere”.

Meanwhile, Frederick Kempe, President and CEO, Atlantic Council, spoke about how world orders should be guided by security and economy.