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UAE, Saudi Arabia back Bahrain dialogue

Anti-government protesters wave flags and demonstrate at the Pearl roundabout in Manama, Bahrain. (GETTY IMAGES)

The UAE and Saudi Arabia urged the Bahraini opposition to heed government calls for dialogue, pledging on Sunday to stand by its neighbour after protesters re-occupied Manama's central Pearl Square.

UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan urged the Bahraini people to “respond favourably to the appeal for dialogue”.

"Saudi Arabia is carefully following the developments... and calls upon brothers in Bahrain to be reasonable in proposing their ideas, and accept what was offered by the government," state news agency SPA said quoting an unnamed official.

Saudi Arabia also voiced its "absolute rejection of any foreign meddling in the internal affairs of Bahrain."

"The people of Bahrain and its government are keener on the security and stability of their country," SPA said.

Saudi Arabia "stands with all its capabilities behind the state of Bahrain and its brotherly people," it said.

Bahraini Crown Prince Sheikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa has offered to open a sweeping national dialogue with the opposition, after a deadly police raid on Pearl Square on Thursday, which was followed by army deployment in the streets of Manama.
 

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