The United Arab Emirates' top diplomat is warning that the Islamic State group could team up with Islamic militants in Somalia, and says more should be done to prepare for such a threat.

The Emirati foreign minister, Sheik Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, made the comments Wednesday at a counter-piracy conference in Dubai.

He said "what really scares us" is the possibility of collaboration between extremists such as the Islamic State group that now controls large parts of Iraq and Syria, and the militant Islamic group al-Shabab in Somalia.

Sheik Abdullah did not cite any specific intelligence pointing to active collaboration between the groups. His country is among the most prominent Arab allies taking part in U.S.-led airstrikes against the Islamic State group.