Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro visits Qatar on Mideast tour

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro traveled Tuesday to the energy-rich nation of Qatar as part of a Mideast tour.

Maduro was met at Doha International Airport by Qatar’s minister of state for foreign affairs, Sultan bin Saad al-Muraikhi, and others, according to the state-run Qatar News Agency. Maduro is traveling with his wife, Cilia Flores, and other Venezuelan officials on the trip.

Maduro will meet Wednesday with its ruling emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, while in Qatar, a major natural gas supplier and the host of the upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup.

“The visit allows strengthening the cooperation agenda focused on the areas of science and technology, agriculture, transportation, energy, tourism and culture,” Venezuela’s state-run broadcaster VTV said in reporting on Maduro’s arrival.

The Qatar News Agency particularly pointed at energy policy as a joint concern between the nations.

Maduro is on a Eurasia tour after President Joe Biden decided not to invite him to the Summit of the Americas, which began Thursday. His earlier stops included Algeria and Turkey.