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Saudi Arabia: Riyadh launches Red Sea group

Less assertive until now in the region than its ally the UAE or rival Qatar, Saudi Arabia hosted the first consultative meeting of the Arab and African Coastal States of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden (AARSGA) in Riyadh on 12 December, attended by foreign ministers from seven countries. A communiqué said AARSGA was set up to enhance co-operation “in the political, economic, cultural, environmental and security fields”. A follow-up meeting of senior officials is due to be held in Cairo.

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