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GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS - DEVELOPMENT AID

Week-long mission to construct a primary school in the village of Barkamuda in Nepal
posted on 19/11/2014

As part of Volunteer Globally 2014, a group of 16 volunteers from the U.A.E. led by Tarek Al Gurg, CEO of Dubai Cares, recently undertook a week-long mission to construct a primary school in the village of Barkamuda in Nepal. The school is set to directly benefit 150 children and indirectly benefit 1,000 officials and teachers in the village. The team undertook activities such as digging, making bricks, carrying water and tying rebar. The team left from Dubai on November 8. - Gulf News -http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/education/week-long-mission-to-construct-a-primary-school-in-the-village-of-barkamuda-in-nepal-1.1414288

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Lubna Al Qasimi underlines active role played by non-governmental organisations
posted on 18/11/2014

Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, the U.A.E.'s Minister of International Cooperation and Development and President of the U.A.E. Committee for the Coordination of Foreign Humanitarian Aid, has stressed the importance of the role that civic and non-governmental organisations play in various aspects of humanitarian work, such as responding to crises and humanitarian disasters.
Their work, she said, supports the efforts of the international community, and contributes towards resolving many international developmental and humanitarian issues.
Sheikha Lubna made the comments during a meeting with Neal Keny Guyer, the CEO of the American global aid agency, Mercy Corps, wherein they discussed avenues of cooperation. Both the sides, the Ministry of International Cooperation and Development and also the organisation were able to exchange experiences during the meeting.
The minister commended Mercy Corps's charitable and humanitarian work and efforts, which she said clearly proves the active role that specialised civilian organisations play in conjunction with the governments, and also reflects the positive values and philosophy of voluntary work.
Guyer expressed his appreciation for the pivotal role played by the U.A.E. in international development, and commended the U.A.E.'s contribution and response to various humanitarian crises and disasters in different parts of the world.
Guyer also said that it is important for the international community and for the governments to support the efforts of humanitarian organisations, and to encourage more community involvement in humanitarian and charitable work. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272558427.html

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Survey shows Khalifa Foundation-backed food fortification initiative in Afghanistan a success story
posted on 16/11/2014

KABUL: A recent survey conducted in Afghanistan in 2013 proved that the national food fortification programme funded through the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation and other partners, and executed by the Swiss Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), was successful in reducing the incidence of malnutrition among preschool-age children and women of reproductive age, and was particularly effective in preventing iodine deficiency disorders and brain damage through iodisation of edible salt.
Afghanistan's Minister of Health, Soraya Dalil, recently said her country was very grateful to the United Arab Emirates and its highly respected leadership for this great success achieved through the programme. Dalil's announcement hailed the role of the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation in supporting nutrition and food fortification in the country and its contribution to the larger "Health for All aim as stated in our National Health and Nutrition Policy and Strategy 2012 – 2013." In a written document, of which WAM received a copy, Dalil said that the nutrition survey conducted recently with the assistance of the UNICEF, showed that household access to iodised salt was estimated at 73.6 percent, a proportion that represents a great progress towards the achievement of the universal salt iodisation norm defined as a minimum of 80 to 90 percent of households having access to adequately iodised salt.
The minister added that "If continued, this pace of progress will place Afghanistan on the list of iodine deficiency free countries that will have defeated the scourge of the lethal effects of iodine deficiency disorders and brain damage." The Minister of Health acknowledged that this achievement could not have been possible without the funding and support of the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation .
As part of the strategy adopted by the project, being conducted through partnership between GAIN and the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation in collaboration with Afghanistan's Ministry of Health, it is expected that 18 million Afghans will benefit by the end of 2015 from the services provided by the projects including salt iodization, fortification of wheat flour with iron, folic acid and vitamin B12; vitaminisation of edible oil and ghee with vitamin A and D, and the local production of multi nutrient powder (MNP) that will improve the micronutrient and nutritional status of children between the age of 6 to 24 months.
The national food fortification programme is a priority for the government of Afghanistan. The support extended by the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation to this programme was acknowledged by the Minister of Health and representatives of nine other ministries in a meeting of all the salt producers, the government and other parties, that was organised by GAIN in Kabul in December last year.
The minister reiterated the success of this programme, particularly with regards to salt iodization, in not only increasing household access to iodised salt to 73.6 percent but also in improving quality as 44.6 percent of all salt samples analysed were found adequately iodised in 2013, compared to only 28.5 percent in 2004.
The minister indicated that Afghanistan deserves to celebrate this success of the iodisation programme as more than 70 percent of Afghan families are consuming iodised salt that will protect preschool children and women of reproductive age from brain damage in pregnancy, congenital anomalies in newborns, perinatal mortality, endemic mental retardation and loss of productivity and economic development at the national level.
The national nutrition survey had covered about 22,000 households distributed across all 34 provinces of the country, and was aimed at reviewing the current nutritional situation, establishing the trends and looking for associated factors that influence the nutritional status of the population in Afghanistan.
The survey collected information about household food security, infant and young child feeding and care practices, weight and height to assess malnutrition and laboratory analysis of biologic samples to determine vitamin and mineral deficiencies in addition to other health and environmental factors such as infection diseases, access to health care services, drinking water, hygiene and sanitation.
The minister indicated that the salt iodisation programme was being implemented, thanks to the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation 's support, through mobilisation and organisation of salt producers and building their managerial capacity and technical skills to produce iodised salt of high quality. and Also, a revolving fund has been established to help procure potassium iodate, instead of the existing arrangement dependent upon unsustainable free donations which had failed to produce optimum results in the past.
The document also pointed to the contribution of the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation in combating the disastrous effects of iodine deficiency disorders. Nutrition experts affirm that deficiency of iodine in the diet during pregnancy is a major cause of brain damage that can lead to irreversible mental retardation if not addressed properly and in time. They also indicate that iodine deficiency during pregnancy is a major cause of still births, abortion, perinatal mortality and congenital anomalies in newborns.
Nutrition experts report that iodine is a natural element available in soil and water and is normally found in foods that come from plant or animal sources. However, over the years, iodine has been leached out by soil erosion due to floods, overgrazing by livestock, loss of vegetation, etc., resulting in a continued and increasing loss of iodine from the soil. Foods grown locally and animals grazing in those areas lack iodine. As a result, the local diet contains less iodine and the entire population is exposed to iodine deficiency. In this context, the only possibility to improve the iodine intake is to have an external source of iodine.
During the last few decades, the UNICEF, governments, non-governmental organisations and the international community have adopted salt iodisation as the most effective, practical and affordable strategy to control iodine deficiency disorders. These stakeholders came together and assigned the universal salt iodisation (USI) target of 80 to 90 percent of household access to adequate iodised salt as a guarantee to eliminate iodine deficiency disorders and its terrifying effects on brain development and the socio-economic growth of a country. Afghanistan is among the countries that have endorsed the USI goal as a national priority. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates-international/1395272467154.html

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Suez Canal Authority and Challenge Consortium mark commencement of dredging work on new Suez Canal Project
posted on 15/11/2014

ISMAILIA – EGYPT: The Challenge Consortium led by the National Marine Dredging Company (NMDC), in collaboration with the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), yesterday held a ceremony in Ismailia to mark the arrival of marine dredgers and commencement of dredging on the new Suez Canal project.
The larger Suez Canal expansion project was announced earlier this year by the President of the Republic of Egypt, Abdul Fattah Al Sisi.
The celebration began at the Simulation and Marine Training Center of the Suez Canal Authority with a welcome note and a presentation on the new Suez Canal project by the Authority's Chairman, Lieutenant General Mohab Mamish,.
The welcome address was followed by a briefing delivered by the consortium representative Engineer Yasser Zaghloul, CEO of the NMDC. Highlighting the various phases of dredging work on the new Suez Canal project. Zaghloul provided details on the number of dredgers that will work on the project. In addition, he outlined the operation schedule for the underwater work that is anticipated to dredge a total of 250 million cubic meters of soil. Zaghloul also offered an overview on the giant dredger ‘Almarfa'a owned by the U.A.E.'s National Marine Dredging Company.
Following the talks, Lieutenant General Mohab Mamish headlined a press conference.
The ceremony was attended by Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, U.A.E. Minister of State, as well as a number of Ministers, the U.A.E. Ambassador in Cairo, governors of the Suez Canal Zone, Chairman of the NMDC, Mohammad Thani Murshed Al Ruamithi and representatives of the consortium including Boscalis and Van Oord from Holland, Jean Donnell and Dredger International from Belgium and Great Lakes from the USA. The ceremony also drew the attendance of senior media professionals, journalists, representatives of news agencies, global newspapers and the Dubai Press Club.
Lieutenant General Muhab Mamish said: "The new Suez Canal project reflects the vision of His Excellency President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi. The initiative will play a vital and an important role in improving Egypt's economic activity through expanding the canal's capacity and generating increased revenues. The canal's development will help establish specialized economic areas, cities and projects. Such projects will stimulate economic growth and create more job opportunities." Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber said: "I would like to convey my warm wishes from the U.A.E.'s leadership and its people to our brothers in Egypt. I would also like to thank the Suez Canal Authority and the National Marine Dredging Company for inviting me to attend the ceremony. Establishing a strong consortium that includes several international companies, which are well-known for their extensive expertise, to execute this huge project enhances the chances of the project's success.
"I am confident that the Suez Authority's efforts to manage the project and its cooperation with the consortium will contribute to the scheduled completion of drilling work on the new canal." Engineer Yasser Nasser Zaghloul, CEO of the NMDC, the consortium lead said: "We understand, fully, the strategic importance of this project to Egypt and the world. We are also aware that through this project we are working hand in hand to build Egypt's future and realizing His Excellency Abdul Fattah Al Sisi, President of the Republic of Egypt's vision of a sustainable, strong economy for Egypt." He added: "That is why the NMDC embarked on forming one of the strongest dredging consortiums in the world that includes companies with global expertise and impeccable track records. All companies in the challenge consortium are committed to extending every effort and resource necessary to execute this important project." The ceremony concluded with guests and C-suite executives exchanging perspectives on the strategic importance of the new Suez Canal project and their determination to complete the work within schedule. The attendees then met at the Beach Club in Ismailia to mark the beginning of the alliance's dredging work from the Almarfa'a dredger.
The massive project will see the creation of a new Suez Canal parallel to the current channel spanning a total length of 72 kilometers. The New Suez Canal project is set to boost Egypt's economy and help speed up the movement of vessels through the 193 km long canal, which connects the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/arab/1395272414650.html

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UNDP stresses UAE's developmental role in Palestine
posted on 14/11/2014

Frode Mauring, UNDP Special Representative of the Administrator in the occupied Palestinian Territory, has highlighted the UAE's efforts to improve the deteriorating humanitarian situation of the Palestinian people.
During his visit to the Emirates Red Crescent's headquarters, the UN official commended reconstruction projects carried out by the authority in the Gaza Strip.
Mr. Mauring briefed Emirates Red Crescent officials on the objectives of the UNDP and its activities in the Palestinian arena, pointing out that the programme is concerned with the rehabilitation of Palestinian infrastructure in the areas of education, health, water and electricity services, women's affairs and the youth.
Dr. Mohammad Atiq Al Falahi, Secretary-General of the ERC, stressed the authority's keenness to improve the lives of Palestinian people in implementation of the directives of the wise leadership and the follow-up of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler's Representative in the Western Region and ERC Chairman.
He also reiterated that the ERC is keen to strengthen and boost its partners http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272392238.htmlhip with the UNDP on the Palestinian arena. - Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272392238.html

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Lubna Al Qasimi: Women should be encouraged into more leadership positions in the energy sector
posted on 13/11/2014

Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, U.A.E. Minister of International Cooperation and Development, yesterday said that women should be supported, encouraged and recognised for their abilities to make valuable contributions to the primarily male-dominated fields of science and engineering.
During a panel discussion about women in industry, which took place on the sidelines of the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference, Sheikha Lubna noted that although women in the U.A.E. today face many fewer challenges to setting foot in the energy sector, more could be done to encourage and increase the number of women in leadership positions.
"When we compare the 1980's to today, we are talking about a totally different set of challenges. Today there are many women who are engineers. Women are getting hired, and I don't think there are a lot of issues. But what we face as a challenge is seeing more women in leadership positions, women being part of the board of directors or trustees of organisations, this is the challenge that we will push towards as we go through the years," the Minister said.
"The struggle for women is to really step up in a man's world of engineering. The challenge that we talk about today is where we want to reach as women leaders," she explained.
Other speakers included Vicki Hollu, President of Occidental Oil and GAS, Americas, Elisabeth Proust, CEO and Managing Director of Total, Nigeria, and Kathy Pepper, Vice President Middle East and Russia, ExxonMobil, all examples of women who have succeeded in carving their way through a male-dominated global industry to become top leaders in their own right.
The panellists agreed that more should be done to encourage and accommodate the needs of women in the industry, saying that organisations should recognise the added value that women can bring to the table.
"What companies are realising is that they need to get women into the industry, into their companies, because they are a great resource and to get women in the quantities that they need, they need to recognise that men and women are the same," said Kathy Pepper, who went on to say that the industry has come a long way in the last 30 years, and said she hopes to see a greater number of women take hold of management positions in the future.
"Women work in different ways than men, and we need to have a more diverse, more open, more flexible and accommodating workplace to facilitate equality and mutual respect based on merit," she added.
The panel stressed the importance of upholding a good work ethic, a positive attitude, passion and determination to help women break through the glass ceiling to excel in the energy or any other sector.
"We can all work hard and we can all have good energy, but there is always the question of who can be a leader, and who cannot," Sheikha Lubna said.
She continued, "It's all about delivery. You will stand-out in any organisation if you deliver, and that includes understanding the objectives and mission of the organisation you are working for.
"It's also about teamwork. It's never been about you, it's not about your ego, it's really all about creating an environment that can drive that organisation to a better level," she concluded. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272322571.html

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Lubna Al Qasimi chairs Panel discussion on U.A.E. Aid Programme and Millennium Development Goals
posted on 13/11/2014

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development, MICAD, and Head of the U.A.E. Committee for the Coordination of Humanitarian Foreign Aid, has highlighted the U.A.E.'s efforts in international development through the active role played by the U.A.E.'s donor institutions and authorities.
Her remarks were made in a speech as the chairperson of a high-level panel discussion of the relationship between the U.A.E.'s aid programme and the Millennium Development Goals, with the participation of representatives of a number of humanitarian organisations and Emirati donor institutions.
The Minister expressed deep appreciation for the vital role played by the U.A.E.'s donors and humanitarian organisations, confirming the continuation of the cooperation and partnership approach to formulating the nation's unified vision to integrate and improve the country's contributions towards supporting the international community in achieving its development goals and to link the objectives of the U.A.E.'s aid sector with global goals.
Sheikha Lubna noted that the United Nations Millennium Summit, held in New York in 2000, unanimously approved a common vision to rid the world of poverty by the end of 2015, which contributed to the elaboration of the Millennium Development Goals.
She added that over the last 15 years, significant progress on the Millennium Development Goals has been achieved in various fields.
Sheikha Lubna stressed the importance of the panel discussion in addressing the U.A.E.'s contributions to foreign aid and how the country's previous projects fit the agenda of the Millennium Development Goals as well as the roadmap of the post-2015 UN Development Agenda, noting its impact on the formulation of the U.A.E.'s aid programme for the next 15 years.
The meeting was attended by Dr. Tariq Ahmed Al Hidan, Assistant Foreign Minister for International Organisation Affairs, Hazza Al Qahtani, Under-Secretary of MICAD and Najla Al Kaabi, Assistant Under-Secretary for International Cooperation.
It was also attended by Ahmed Shabib Al Dhahiri, Director-General of the Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation, Humaid Al Shamsi, Deputy Secretary-General of the Emirates Red Crescent, and a number of representatives of humanitarian agencies and institutions. - Emirates News Agency, WAM – http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272330948.html

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Lubna, Panamanian Vice-President discuss stronger partnership on international development
posted on 13/11/2014

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development, Head of the U.A.E. Committee for the Coordination of Humanitarian Foreign Aid, and President of Zayed University, on Wednesday received the visiting Vice-President and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Panama, Isabel de Saint Malo de Alvarado, at the university in Abu Dhabi.
During their meeting, the two sides discussed the cooperation relations and partnership between the U.A.E. and Panama on international development.
In her remarks at the meeting, Sheikha Lubna reiterated the U.A.E.'s keen interest in enhancing its relations with Panama and exploring mutually beneficial opportunities.
She also noted the importance of creating a common vision to enhance the mechanisms of international development.
Sheikha Lubna also hailed the Panama government's efforts to develop the country's economy and accelerate development rates, in the area of human development in particular.
On her part, Ms Alvarado stressed that Panama looks forward to promoting its relations and partnership with the U.A.E. which, she noted, has achieved a notable stature in the Middle East region, is seeing growth at increasing rates in all development sectors, and is now at the forefront of international development helping developing countries to elevate their standards of living.
The Panamanian senior official also noted that the U.A.E. managed to strike a balance between national development and international development.
Hazza Al Qahtani, Under Secretary of the U.A.E. Ministry of International Cooperation and Development (Micad), and Sultan Mohammed Al Shamsi, Assistant Under Secretary of Micad for International Development, attended the meeting. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272361045.html

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Palestinian President commends U.A.E.'s assistance to Palestinian people, just cause
posted on 10/11/2014

RAMALLAH: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has commended the firm position of the U.A.E. towards the Palestinian people and the Palestine cause.
He added that the U.A.E.'s support to the just Palestinian cause has remained consistent.
President Abbas made the remark yesterday afternoon here, while receiving Ahmed Juma Al Za'abi, U.A.E. Deputy Minister for Presidential Affairs, Deputy Chairman of the Khalifa Foundation, and the delegation accompanying him.
He noted that the U.A.E. tops the countries that back the Palestinian issue, citing the unwavering support of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan to the Palestinian people, a legacy sustained by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
President Abbas said the opening of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Al Azaria, near Jerusalem, reiterates the U.A.E.'s support to Jerusalem and its Arab character. "It is a model for Emirati giving to the Palestinian people." He noted that each Palestinian senses the U.A.E.'s help through the development programme in terms of schools, Mosques and hospitals in the Palestinian territories, adding that the U.A.E. charitable bodies have an impact in Palestine.
On his part, Al Zaabi conveyed the regards of the U.A.E. President to the Palestinian President, adding that the opening of the Sheikh Khalifa Mosque in Jerusalem today "cherishes U.A.E.'s support to Palestinians in all fields." The aim behind building the Mosque, he continued, is not only to pray but to assert the need of construction in Palestinian territory. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272175730.html

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Khalifa bin Zayed Mosque in Jerusalem is ready to welcome worshippers
posted on 09/11/2014

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Preparations are in full swing for the grand official opening today of the Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Mosque at the Aizariya area in the eastern suburb of Jerusalem, which will be the biggest mosque in Palestine after Al Aqsa Mosque.
The six-floor iconic mosque is funded and overseen by the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, and it is considered to be the largest mosque built in Palestine in terms of size and capacity after the Al Aqsa Mosque. Stretching 6000 square metres, the religious project is part of many U.A.E. vital projects in Palestine in general and in the occupied Jerusalem in particular, which also cover aid programmes, building schools, homes, hospitals, women's centres, orphans and special needs shelters and other development projects for the benefit of the Palestinian people.
Sheikh Yusouf Daibes, Palestinian Minister of Endowments, said the grand mosque, named after U.A.E. President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, had been the focal point of the Palestinian official and popular circles, being a signature landmark reflecting the U.A.E.'s assistant and support for the Palestinian people.
'The holy city of Jerusalem has been and is still receiving unprecedented care from the U.A.E. since the era of the late founding father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and then his successor President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa. The U.A.E. is implementing many developmental, humanitarian and charitable projects in the holy city in support of its people,' he added.
Adnan Al-Husseini, Minister of Jerusalem Affairs, said the construction of the Sheikh Khalifa mosque revives hopes that the Islamic Nation was striving to protect its holy shrines from Judaisation and demolition.
He noted that the location of the mosques would make its easily accessible to more than 100,000 Palestinians living in the surrounding towns and villages.
Engineer Samir Qirsh of the contracting company said the mosque is built on a large area of land which is located on a hill underpinning the construction and overlooking the main sectors of Jerusalem and Al Aqsa Mosque. Its two minarets rise to a height of 75 metres so that the eastern walls of Al Aqsa mosque are seen.
He added that the Sheikh Khalifa mosque was designed to accommodate 6,000 worshipers (men and women) on its first and second floors. The first floor is for males and can accommodate 4,000 worshippers while the second floor is for women and accommodates 2000 worshippers.
The area for men is 1,650 square metres while the second floor for women covers an area of 1,000 square metres. The grand mosque has two entrances for men, one to the east and another to the west, while the women's entrance is separate.
The mosque houses a centre for memorisation of the Holy Quran, a public Islamic library and will have a health centre affiliated the Maqasid Charitable Hospital in Jerusalem in the future. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272129843.html

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Lubna Al Qasimi, Serbian Deputy Prime Minister discusses cooperating on international development
posted on 06/11/2014

Sheikha Lubna bint Khaled Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development and Head of the UAE National Committee for the Coordination of Foreign Aid, received in her Office yesterday, Ms. Kori Udovicki, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Administration of Serbia, and her accompanying delegation.
During the meeting, which was held at the headquarters of the of International Cooperation and Development (MICAD), in Abu Dhabi, the two sides discussed ways of developing partnerships and cooperation between the UAE and Serbia in international development, and explored major humanitarian issues, global developments, and the international efforts exerted in response to these issues.
During the meeting, Sheikha Lubna asserted the UAE's keenness on enhancing various mechanisms and channels of partnership with the Republic of Serbia in all fields, especially with relation to humanitarian and development themes, in addition to exploring mutual cooperation opportunities for boosting efforts of international development, enhancing the mechanisms of effective responses to humanitarian crises, and exchanging views and experiences between the two countries.
In addition, Sheikha Lubna affirmed that the UAE is working on supporting development efforts in Serbia based on the strong and mutual relationships between the two countries.
Kori Udovicki affirmed Serbia's keenness on enhancing cooperation with the UAE, which she said is witnessing accelerating indicators of success and development on all national levels, in addition to the UAE's regional and international elevated status.
She also commended the UAE's efforts in the social and economic development of Serbia, especially the active role of the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) and UAE investments for supporting the Serbian economy and development plans.
The meeting was attended by Hazza Al Qahtani, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of International Cooperation and Development. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395271980890.html

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Lubna stresses U.A.E.'s commitment to support Syrian refugees
posted on 29/10/2014

BERLIN: Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development (MICAD) and Head of U.A.E. National Committee for the Coordination of Foreign Aid, has affirmed U.A.E.'s commitment to provide support and alleviate the sufferings of the Syrian refugees.
Sheikha Lubna, who made the remarks during her participation in the "Berlin Conference on the Syrian Refugee Situation – Supporting Stability in the Region", said that the U.A.E., through its humanitarian foundations and UN competent agencies, has provided Dh 378 million in 2014 for 856 Palestinians and displaced Syrians in Syria.
In her statement, Sheikha Lubna pointed out that the U.A.E. aid was diversified and included the provision of food security, health care, water supplies and sewerage projects, education and shelters for the advantage of around 420,000 Syrian refugees at Al Zaartari and Azraq Refugees Camps in Jordan.
She added that the U.A.E has constructed the joint Emirati-Jordanian Refugee Camp in Marjeeb Al Fahood, in Jordan, which accommodates over 5,000 Syrian refugees and has recently completed its expansion to receive 10,000 refugees.
She also added that the U.A.E. has also established the U.A.E. field hospital at Marfraq Area, Jordan which was constructed in August 2012 and can provide medical service to over 8,000 persons in a daily basis.
The Minister also warned against dire conditions endured by the Syrian refugees which represent a crisis at the regional and international arenas. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates-arab-international/1395271579472.html

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Mansour bin Zayed donates Dh1million for Children's Cancer patients in Egypt
posted on 27/10/2014

H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, gave a boost to the noble goals of the Zayed Charity Marathon in Cairo by donating Dh1 million for children affected with cancer. Currently, there are 8,000 such patients.
The third stage of the Marathon will be held in as per the directives of His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces.
The Marathon also coincides with the U.A.E.'s 43rd National Day anniversary and the proceeds will go towards the Children's Cancer Hospital, Egypt, the CCHE 57357.
The Higher Organising Committee of the Marathon, is headed by Lt. Gen. (retired) Mohammed Hilal Al Kaabi, Second Deputy Chairman of the National Olympic Committee, and works in coordination with the U.A.E. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt's Ministry of Youth And Sports and Directorate of Children's Cancer Hospital in Egypt.
Sheikh Mansour's donation comes as part of the generous support of the U.A.E.'s Sheikhs for charitable and humanitarian initiatives and the U.A.E.'s support to the needy victims of disasters and crises.
The country also provided all sorts of support to various Arab and global issues and problems, as this is a legacy of the Founder of the Union, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and the wise vision and far-sighted directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who takes a keen interest in reinforcing the U.A.E.'s charitable message and its permanent initiatives to benefit the underprivileged segments across the world.
It also comes as part of the continuous support and the directives of His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces, who has directed that such charitable donations must continue on the side-lines of sports events to achieve peace and love. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –

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U.A.E. vaccinates more than 13 million children against polio in Pakistan: U.A.E. PAP
posted on 26/10/2014

ISLAM ABAD: The U.A.E. vaccinated more than 13.2 million children in Pakistan against polio between June and September 2014 as part of a campaign set up following directives from President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, on an initiative by His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of U.A.E. Armed Forces. The effort is part of the U.A.E. government's 2013 pledge of Dh440 million to support global efforts in eradicating polio by 2018, with a specific contribution towards Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to the U.A.E. Pakistan Assistance Programme, U.A.E. PAP, in its announcement of the final results of the massive immunisation drive.
During the U.A.E.'s four-month effort to combat the deadly infectious disease, 13,238,701 Pakistani children were vaccinated, of whom10,235,995 were in 25 areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and 3,447,706 in the tribal regions, said Abdullah Khalifa Al Ghafli, Director of the U.A.E PAP, adding that the campaign was carried out on schedule and accompanied by an educational campaign about the disease.
As of 22 October 2014, Pakistan reported 210 cases of paralysis caused by wild poliovirus in 2014. This is the highest number of cases on record through October in any year, and accounts for more than 85% of all cases worldwide, according to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, a public-private partnership led by national governments and spearheaded by the World Health Organisation, WHO, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, and the United Nations Children's Fund, Unicef, and other agencies.
In September alone, more than 5.2 million children were vaccinated against the disease in 11 areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and some 2.4 million children in the tribal regions, noted Al Ghafli.
U.A.E. PAP carried out the massive immunisation drive in cooperation with the Pakistan army and ministry of health, the World Health Organisation, W.H.O, and regional governments.
Programme officials said that between 7-19 June, nearly five thousand teams worked intensively in nine areas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and in 12 areas in tribal regions, to vaccinate more than two and a half million children under five years old against polio at health centres in local communities and using mobile units which travelled to remote areas.
On 24th April 2013, one day ahead of the Global Vaccine Summit in Abu Dhabi, His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan pledged a donation of Dh440 million to support global efforts to eradicate polio by 2018.
As he announced the pledge, H.H. Sheikh Mohammad said, "Saving generations of children from preventable diseases is a humanitarian initiative that can only be achieved through global collaboration. Under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the U.A.E. strives to engage in global partnerships that solve these significant international issues." Al Ghafli, Director of the U.A.E. Pakistan Assistance Programme, said the polio vaccination campaign further recognises U.A.E.'s humanitarian efforts under the wise leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and proves that the country's initiatives to assist poor countries facing serious humanitarian conditions contribute to the effective building and development of communities for a brighter future.
He described the campaign as an "exceptional success", not least since remote areas pose a large challenge for the effort to erase polio in Pakistan – 95 per cent of the country's polio cases in the past six months were reported in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region. "All previous local and international polio vaccination campaigns failed to reach these areas," he added.
Al Ghafli noted that the ongoing U.A.E. polio campaign has overcome geography, which posed a serious challenge, as all previous local and international polio vaccination campaigns failed to reach these areas, which accounted for 95% of Pakistan's polio cases in the past six months, resulting in the wider spreading of the disease into other areas.
Al Ghafli also noted that sound planning and well-organised implementation were instrumental in the success of the campaign, which received a wide response from the local communities and regional governments who reiterated their confidence in U.A.E. and the humanitarian initiatives launched by its leadership for the good of their children.
The local residents of the targeted Pakistani areas, who expressed their thanks and appreciation for all the efforts of H.H. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and H.H. Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, described the polio campaign as a welcome initiative by a Muslim and friendly country to vaccinate their children.
Ala Alwan, World Health Organisation Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, said, "The U.A.E.'s support for the polio vaccination campaign in Pakistan, following directives from its wise leaders and the initiative of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, stands out as a model for solidarity that should prevail in the international community in the field of combating diseases and epidemics that know no geographic borders and indiscriminately hit all people alike.
The W.H.O. official thanked U.A.E. for its generous initiative and said he was looking forward to seeing it expand into other affected regions and attract other countries to join these humanitarian efforts for a better future and provide healthier lives for children. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395271375251.html

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Lubna Al Qasimi affirms UAE's commitment to UN resolutions
posted on 24/10/2014

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development (MICAD), has affirmed the U.A.E.'s commitment to various United Nations resolutions, and reiterated the nation's quest to forge partnerships and coordinate actively with organisations affiliated to the UN.
In a speech marking United Nations Day, which falls tomorrow, Sheikha Lubna said that the partnership, which has seen the U.A.E. building bridges with the UN for humanitarian and development causes, strengthens the U.A.E.'s efforts as a major donor for development and humanitarian assistance, and has put the U.A.E. among the ranks of countries which respond to humanitarian crises in various parts of the world.
On the 24th of October each year, the world celebrates United Nations Day, which, since its inception in 1945, has always sent a message of peace aimed at uniting the states, the governments and the peoples on many issues affecting peace and global stability.
Sheikha Lubna stressed that the multiplicity and diversity of partnership agreements guide the U.A.E. for aiding developing countries, poor communities and areas that experience disasters. It makes it possible to provide assistance to institutions, agencies and programmes affiliated to the UN. Such partnerships also contribute towards expediting such aid and enhancing our ability to deliver it to targeted recipients.
Sheikha Lubna said, "We in the U.A.E., which joined the UN in 1971, the year the country was established, recognise the importance of the active and vital role played by the UN organisation based on the faith of our wise leadership in the UN Charter and International norms. We are aware of the importance of achieving more cohesiveness and deepening the global partnership to find effective solutions to the issues and risks facing our world.
"As we recall the tremendous efforts and achievements made, thanks to the partnership between the international community and the United Nations, we look forward to a better future for unified efforts and perspectives in order to confront the problems and threats that affect our safety and security, as well as the stability of humanity," Sheikha Lubna added. - Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395271319490.html

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Khalifa Foundation distributes 50,000 school bags to disadvantaged students in Palestine
posted on 22/10/2014

The Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation for humanitarian work has implemented part of its programme to support the education sector in the Palestinian territories, where it has distributed 50,000 school bags to students in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
The initiative is part of the foundation's humanitarian aid programme to provide assistance to students in the Palestinian territories, given the current humanitarian crisis being experienced by the Palestinian people.
Some 30,000 school bags were distributed to students in the Gaza Strip, and 20,000 bags were distributed in the West Bank.
Palestinian families extended their thanks and appreciation to the U.A.E. and to the Khalifa Foundation for the various annual programmes it has implemented in the Palestinian territories, especially in camps and villages. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/general/1395271192970.html

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Emirates Red Crescent distributes thousands of school uniforms to Gaza students
posted on 20/10/2014

GAZA: The Emirates Red Crescent, ERC, in the Gaza Strip has begun distributing school uniforms to underprivileged students attending UNRWA schools in Gaza at the start of the new school year.
Emad Abu al-Laban, Director of the ERC Office in Gaza, who is overseeing the distribution of uniforms, said the project seeks to assist disadvantaged residents of Gaza who are facing economic difficulties.
Abu al-Laban added that the project, which has been organised in cooperation with UNRWA, has so far distributed 5,000 uniforms to female students as part of efforts to alleviate some of the financial burdens of their families.
The ERC is eager to provide assistance to as many people as possible, adding that the organisation carries out a number of other projects with the help of Gaza charities, noted Abu al-Laban.
The school principals thanked the ERC for their efforts and said the school uniforms have been delivered to those students who are most in need, following criteria developed for this purpose.
The students receiving assistance also expressed their thanks to the U.A.E. and the ERC for their humanitarian efforts in Gaza. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395271064747.html

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MBRF and UNESCO continue literacy programme in Somalia
posted on 20/10/2014

NAIROBI: The joint committee of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation, MBRF, and the United Nations Organisation for Education, Science and Culture, UNESCO, Regional Office for Eastern Africa, have held a meeting in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, to discuss its literacy project in Somalia, a programme funded by MBRF and being carried out by UNESCO.
Mohammed Obaid bin Ghannam, Secretary-General of the MBRF, praised the cooperation with UNESCO, who he said have been working in full partnership, bringing to play their experience and specialisation in the educational field; noting that the project is especially important, given the difficult conditions in Somalia which have impacted negatively on the continuation of the educational process there.
The Secretary-General said that experts from both groups discussed carrying out projects, along with the difficulties and challenges they face and seeking the means to overcome such problems.
Mohamed Djelid, Director, UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa, said that UNESCO's ties with MBRF have created a real partnership, special interests and mutual concerns.
Jaleed went on to say that the meeting focused on the need for the participation of Somalia's central and local government, civil society organisations, tribal leaders and opinion leaders in this effort to fight illiteracy in the African country.
The meeting also covered the need to develop a curriculum, and highlighted the importance of coordinating with universities and civil society organisations, as well as the importance of providing libraries and modern teaching aids to help in the success of the programme. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395271065945.html

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Al Jaber inspects progress at U.A.E-funded project in Giza, Egypt
posted on 19/10/2014

CAIRO: Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State, and Chairman of the Coordination Office of U.A.E.-funded Development Projects in Egypt, has inspected progress at the construction site of a new bridge in Ardh Alliwa at-grade intersection, one of the four U.A.E.-funded projects under construction in the Giza Governorate.
Ardh Alliwa project which is now 92 percent complete is one of the four bridges planned to ease traffic congestion, reduce accidents and resultant losses in Giza's most densely-populated districts of Ardh Alliwa, Nahya, Bashteel.
When completed, the bridges will serve more than three million people in the governorate.
In his remarks during the visit, Minister Al Jaber said, "The directives of the wise leadership of U.A.E. focus on speed and perfection in the construction of all projects. This affirms that we stand by our brothers in Egypt." "I am pleased to inspect the progress at the Ardh Alliwa bridge where the Egyptian workforce has shown strong determination and keenness to carry out the work with the highest quality," added Al Jaber.
Expressing his hope that the projects would be implemented in time and achieve the ultimate goal of better serving Egypt's economy and society, he said that the focus was on infrastructure projects that represent the foundations of economic development.
Minister Al Jaber, who was accompanied to the site of the project by Governor of Giza Ali Abul Rehman, noted that there are indications that Egypt's economy is recovering. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/arab/1395271039100.html

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Abu Dhabi Fund for Development to strengthen development relations with Ghana
posted on 19/10/2014

A high-level government delegation from the Republic of Ghana headed by Alhaji Inusah Fuseini, Minister for Roads and Highways, visited the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) headquarters.
The meeting aimed to enhance mutual cooperation between the Fund and the government of Ghana by encouraging greater collaboration in the development of infrastructure projects in the African country.
Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of ADFD, welcomed the Ghanaian Minister and his accompanying delegation, comprising representatives from Ministry of Roads and Highways, as well as officials from the Consulate General of Ghana in Dubai.
The meeting was also attended by representative from the U.A.E. Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
During the meeting, both sides discussed various aspects of joint cooperation and partnership between ADFD and the government of Ghana across multiple sectors.
Al Suwaidi briefed the delegation on ADFD's ongoing engagement in Ghana, pointing out that the Fund is keen on collaborating in projects that help accelerate Ghana's economic development on a priority basis. He added that such projects should meet the strategic objectives of ADFD.
The Ghanaian delegation offered an overview of the work involved in the roads and highways projects planned by the government of Ghana in collaboration with ADFD. The delegates also shared feasibility studies on the projects for further action.
As an immediate outcome of the meeting, ADFD will review the feasibility studies and communicate set priorities to the Ghanaian Government. ADFD will also consider deputing a fact finding committee to Ghana for a follow up assessment of the project if required.
ADFD, as part of its new direction in development aid, seeks to open up new areas of cooperation between the Fund and the Republic of Ghana in various areas of investments in a bid to contribute to the economic and social developments of Ghana. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates-international/1395271014497.html

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U.A.E contributions to fighting world poverty reached Dh8.9bn in three years
posted on 17/10/2014

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development, has announced that the U.A.E.'s share of donations to fight poverty worldwide has reached Dh8.9 billion over the last three years.
In a statement on the occasion of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, Sheikha Lubna said, "The humanitarian vision of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, as well as the relentless follow-up of His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces, is reflected in the U.A.E.'s praiseworthy manner of addressing the international poverty issue by directing its efforts and effective contributions to alleviate the suffering of people in underprivileged societies." She added that the U.A.E. has become a role model in this respect due to its commitment to achieving the objectives of the Millennium Development Goals, which prioritise poverty eradication.
Sheikha Lubna also said, "Tomorrow, October 17th, we will participate in the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, an issue that has become a grim reality that haunts the international community's conscience." She added that the prevalence of severe poverty in a number of countries and regions across the world is the result of several factors, some of which were deeply rooted in those societies due to a poor international response and the absence of a comprehensive vision in addressing the issue.
At the end of her statement, Sheikha Lubna remarked, "We, as countries, international humanitarian institutions, and civil community organisations, have to rally our efforts to eradicate the issue." - Emirates News Agency - WAM -http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270965691.html

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U.A.E. joins UNICEF in the global fight against Ebola
posted on 16/10/2014

The U.A.E. Ministry of International Cooperation and Development, Micad, and United Nations Children's Fund, Unicef, are partnering to implement a US$5 million project to fight Ebola in the three West African nations of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leon.
This latest contribution comes as part of the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and was ordered by His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces to support the global fight against the spread of the deadly Ebola virus.
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa is the world's worst Ebola epidemic since the disease was identified in 1976. The outbreak, which began in Guinea in early 2014 and quickly spread to the neighbouring countries of Sierra Leone and Liberia, has claimed the lives of more than 3500 individuals to date.
The disease has had a devastating effect on the daily lives of communities and far reaching implications on the health and wellbeing of children. Children face not only the direct risks of exposure to the virus, but also the risks associated with the loss of their parents and family members and the limited access to basic services such health care, education and protection.
Unicef said U.A.E.'s contribution comes at a crucial moment, as the number of infected people is expected to rise. The contribution will allow Unicef to continue to implement programs that focus strongly on educating communities about how to understand, treat and stop the spread of the disease as well as procuring key supplies for use in Ebola Treatment Units and community care centres.
Most importantly, Unicef is focusing on restoring and protecting the delivery of basic social services such as maternal and child healthcare, water, sanitation, hygiene, nutrition, education and protecting children who have lost their parents and have faced the fear and terror of death and disease.
"This valuable contribution from U.A.E. is not surprising. U.A.E. has been championing the cause of health and emergency response for many years and have been able to achieve remarkable results in several causes such as polio eradication." Said Ibrahim El Ziq, Unicef Gulf Area Representative.
"Unicef and the government of U.A.E. have been close partners in a number of emergencies such as the Syria response, Gaza and now the fight against Ebola. It is heartening to see this strong understanding for the needs of children and this unwavering commitment to urgently provide the needed support from the Government of U.A.E." – Emirates News Agency, WAM -
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/international/1395270920189.html

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Jawaher calls on youth to make a difference
posted on 14/10/2014

Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammad Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, has called on youth in the U.A.E. to play an active role in helping with the refugee problem in the region.
Sheikha Jawaher, who is also Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, told Gulf News in an exclusive interview that young people in the U.A.E. need to be aware of the realities of war and problems of displacement in order to contribute to solving the regional problem.
Spreading this kind of awareness is the main aim of the upcoming Sharjah conference titled ‘Investing in the future' taking place on October 15-16.
"Younger members of society need to see the effects of war, in the hope that this will motivate them to choose more productive futures for themselves as well as offer time or resources to assist in the refugee problem,” explained Sheikha Jawaher.
The conference, which will discuss child and youth displacement issues and ways to protect refugee children, will also hold a youth forum for over 600 university students, academics and faculty members. "We want to inspire the young minds of our region to want to make a difference,” said Sheikha Jawaher.
The workshops at the youth forum will expose young people to the realities and problems of displacement and inform them about the importance of social entrepreneurship.
Education is a long-tern solution
Pointing out that any type of assistance given to those afflicted by war is a great deal in itself, Sheikha Jawaher highlighted the need to focus on the protection of refugee children by securing their rights, well-being, and education. "The future lies with the youth and we need to focus on educating them,” said Sheikha Jawaher.
She explained that while displaced children need food and shelter, they also require education and the opportunity to have a brighter future. "They need education as a long-term method to keep them on a productive path,” she said.
Sheikha Jawaher's Big Heart Campaign has also shifted its focus to education. The campaign has assisted hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugee children with emergency health care, blankets, shelter, food and clothing- and is now focused on education. "I began the Big Heart Campaign because I did not want Syrian refugee children to be forgotten,” said Sheikha Jawaher.
Earlier this year the campaign donated US$1.5 million (Dh5.51 million) to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to support primary, secondary and technical education for refugees.
"There are currently about 1 million school-age Syrian refugee children and half of them are enrolled in school,” said Sheikha Jawaher. The campaign has raised money for teachers, school books, and has increased access to schools in order to help refugee children continue their education. – Gulf News - http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/society/jawaher-calls-on-youth-to-make-a-difference-1.1397861

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U.A.E. pledges US$200 million for Gaza rebuilding
posted on 13/10/2014

CAIRO: The U.A.E. announced on Sunday a donation of US$200 million for reconstruction of the Gaza Strip.
Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development (MICAD), made the announcement during the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo yesterday in the presence of representatives of 50 states and 20 international organisations. The meeting was opened by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
U.A.E. Foreign Minister, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in his address to the conference, said, 'We value and reiterate our absolute backing for the latest Egyptian initiative which calls for Israel and Palestinian factions to an immediate cease fire, end the state of violence and fighting and provide protection for civilians.'
In his address to the meeting, read on his behalf by Sheikha Lubna, the U.A.E. Foreign Minister thanked the governments of Egypt and Norway for hosting the international conference, adding that the convening of the conference underlines the sincere desire of brothers and friends to contribute to development and reconstruction projects and stability in Palestine.
'The U.A.E. expresses its denunciation of the continuous Israeli aggressive practices on the Occupied Palestinian Territories and its condemnation of the latest raids launched by Israeli forces on the Gaza Strip, killing and wounding many Palestinian people. The U.A.E. also renews its complete rejection of all acts of violence that result in the killing of civilians and calls for self-restraint and a halt to the policy of massive punishment and revenge. The U.A.E. also categorically decries the latest incursion by Israeli forces into the Aqsa Mosque and the provocation of peace advocates,' Sheikh Abdullah said.
H.H. affirmed that the U.A.E. strongly condemns the continuous Israeli violations of rights of the defenceless Palestinian people, calls for end to settlement activities and demands that the international community acts to enable the Palestinian people to gain their full rights to establish their free and independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital. He went on to say that the U.A.E. also emphasises the need for respect for and observance of the principles of international law and international humanitarian law for preserving security, peace and stability in the region.
H.H. added, 'We, through the podium of this important conference, reaffirm our absolute support for the rebuilding of Gaza so as to alleviate the suffering of its people and improve living conditions, in the Gaza Strip in particular and Palestine in general.' The U.A.E. has been and is still providing financial and material assistance to support the Palestinian people and strengthen Palestinian institutions in the occupied territories. In July 2014, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan instructed the allocation of Dh92 million (US$ 25m) in emergency humanitarian assistance to support the resistance of the Palestinian people during Israeli attacks which killed hundreds of innocent Palestinian civilians. The U.A.E. also committed Dh153 million (US$ 41.6m) to the UNRWA in 2013. Last year, the U.A.E. offered assistance worth Dh340.1m (US$ 92.3m), making Palestine the fifth largest recipient of U.A.E. aid in the world.' Sheikh Abdullah emphasised that humanitarian social responsibility calls on all public and private community forces to participate in and contribute to efforts towards the development of Gaza. 'Through coordination of our roles in this mission, we can secure the essential needs of the Palestinian people.' 'In this context, we emphasise the importance of collective action in planning and then implementing a short-to-long strategy through which we can set the most significant priorities with the Palestinian government to identify the required projects and the serious applicable and concerted commitments among us to implement these developmental projects through which we seek to ensure efficient use of the required resources,' H.H. added.
'We again reiterate the U.A.E.'s commitment to participate and provide assistance for the rebuilding of Gaza and our support for the Palestinian people through the mobilisation of resources and the provision of requirements. We also renew our commitment to the Peace Initiative in the Middle East which urges all parties to work diligently towards the realisation of a comprehensive peace,' Sheikh Abdullah concluded.
On the margins of the conference, Sheikha Lubna met with Borge Brende, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Norway, and discussed with him ways of coordinating stances regarding the Gaza reconstruction efforts. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270764884.html

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Lubna chairs meeting of U.A.E. Committee for the Coordination of Foreign Humanitarian Aid
posted on 02/10/2014

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development (MICAD), Head of the U.A.E. Committee for the Coordination of Foreign Humanitarian Aid, has extended thanks and appreciation to the wise leadership represented by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and the support of His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces and relentless follow-up of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, on the establishment of the 'U.A.E. Committee for the Coordination of Foreign Humanitarian Aid'.
The Committee aims to promote the country's humanitarian contributions for the victims of humanitarian catastrophes and crises as well as bolstering the U.A.E.'s stature on the international humanitarian work arena.
Sheikha Lubna expressed these views while chairing the committee's meeting, which was established last May after the formal approval from the cabinet.
The Committee discussed a number of issues relevant to the U.A.E.'s humanitarian response, mechanisms of enhancing coordination and integration among the Emirati organisations working in this field.
At the end of the meeting, the committee also approved the recommendations, pertaining to the country's response to crises and catastrophes, in order to be referred to the wise leadership for the appropriate decisions. – Emirates News Agency, WAM – http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270391437.html

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