In June 2008, the Iraqi government announced that the United Arab Emirates would send an ambassador to Baghdad within a few days. This would become the first Arab ambassador in Iraq since the kidnapping and murder of Ihab el-Sherif in July 2005. This announcement was made during a surprise visit by the United Arab Emirates' Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan to Baghdad on 5 June 2008. This marked the first time a high-ranking official from a Persian Gulf state visited Iraq since March 2003.
On 31 July 2007 following Iraq's victory of the Asian Cup, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE awarded the Iraq National football team 20 million Dhs, ($5.2 million) for capturing the Asian Cup for the first time in the country’s history.