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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday he discussed with Bahraini Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa the importance of Gulf unity and efforts to counter Iran’s “malign influence” in the region.

“We have discussed the importance of building regional peace and stability, including the importance of Gulf unity and countering Iran’s malign influence in the region.” Pompeo wrote on Twitter. 

The chief US diplomat arrived in Bahrain late Tuesday coming from Sudan as part of a regional tour that includes visits to Israel and to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) who recently signed a normalization deal sponsored by US President Donald Trump.

Palestinian groups, including the Palestinian Authority, have denounced the UAE-Israel deal, saying it does not serve the Palestinian cause and ignores the rights of Palestinians.

Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara

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