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Bahrain Names First Ambassador to Syria in Over a Decade

Bahrain Names First Ambassador to Syria in Over a Decade
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By Staff, Agencies

Bahrain appointed on Thursday its first ambassador to Syria in more than a decade, the island nation's state news agency reported, in the latest sign of a stepped-up outreach to Damascus by Gulf Arab countries.

The decree by Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa came as more Arab countries are improving relations with Damascus nearly 11 years since the outbreak of the war on Syria that has claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians and destroyed large parts of the country.

Early in the conflict, Arab states like Saudi Arabia and Qatar rushed to back fighters battling the Syrian Army Forces. Syria was expelled from the 22-member Arab League in 2011. Arab countries further sanctioned Damascus.

In recent years, however, the Syrian army has won a series of key military victories.

The Bahrain News Agency said the king appointed Waheed Mubarak Sayyar as the kingdom's "ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary to Syria." The embassy of Bahrain was reopened in Damascus in 2018.