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#WorldGovSummit: Mohammed bin Rashid, Mohamed bin Zayed visit Future Museum

posted on 09/02/2016

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, yesterday visited the Museum of the Future at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai.
The Museum is organised by the Dubai Foundation for the Museum of the Future as part of the World Government Summit 2016. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid and Mohamed bin Zayed attended part of the summit on its first day in the presence of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai.
Their Highnesses were briefed on the creative projects and inventions. They confirmed the importance of the role played by the museum in imparting knowledge and showcasing innovations and future science as well as dissemination of knowledge to bring closer the concepts and minds of the people, irrespective of their educational level.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said, 'The World Government Summit moves this year from exploring the future to building it and provides a vivid picture of the future through the museum and its creative vision. We want the participants to touch the future and to inspire what enhances their experiences and raise the level of people's lives.' 'Thanks to science, what we see today will become a reality in the future and we should modernise our teaching methodologies to make these more appropriate to the future of our generations," he added.
The museum, organised by the Dubai Foundation for the Museum of the Future, is deemed one of the prominent and main events accompanying the World Government Summit.
The World Government Summit has attracted more than 3,000 personalities from over 125 countries, and 125 speakers in over 70 sessions. The attendees include VIPs and senior experts from the public and private sectors globally, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics and university students. A number of initiatives, reports and studies are set to be launched during the summit and throughout the year. The summit runs from February 8 - 10, 2016 at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291339373.html

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Obama addresses World Government Summit, commends UAE's innovation and creativity efforts

posted on 09/02/2016

United States (US) President Barack Obama has praised the UAE for its innovation, security and stability, which foster investment and upgrade the community's standard of living, healthcare, education and clean energy.
Speaking via video link at the World Government Summit, the US President commended Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum for hosting the event.
The hall was full more than 20 minutes before the beginning of Obama's speech, and by the time it started, all possible standing space on the sides and the back of the hall were also taken.
The event was attended by Vice President, H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Technology and Media Free Zone Authority H.H. Sheikh Ammar bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Crown Prince of Ajman, Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of Federal National Council (FNC), H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, a number of Sheikhs and senior officials.
Obama noted that governments invest in citizens to achieve security and prosperity. "When government listens to its people, that is how we move forward," Obama said, adding, "Our countries can learn from each other."
Obama said that the US was proud to participate in the World Government Summit in the UAE as a guest nation. "As more children get education, the country's economic growth is a forgone conclusion," he said, noting the advances that the UAE is making in the field of providing education.
The US President said, "Countries are more peaceful when they look after their citizens. We have seen in the tumult across some Middle East and North Africa countries, where governments do not lift up their citizens, it is a recipe for instability and strife."
He said, "Together we can ensure – and arm our children with the education to prepare them, for the global economy – that economic growth is inclusive, that more communities can do their part to protect our planet."
Stefan M. Selig, Under-Secretary for International Trade at the US Department of Commerce, spoke after Obama. He said that the US was proud to participate in the World Government Summit in the UAE as a guest nation.
"I would like to echo the sentiments of the US President. I would like to thank Sheikh Mohammed for hosting this important event. "It is his leadership and vision that has made this year's summit possible," he said.
He noted that the US supports the innovation strategy of the UAE. "It represents a roadmap towards a more innovative economy. Our countries are partners in space research and technology on the Mars mission. The UAE's commitment to innovation makes it a trusted partner of the US."
He hailed the UAE's National Innovative Strategy and said that the strategy is a roadmap to expand opportunities for Emiratis. "The National Innovation Strategy will add to a diverse economy," said Selig.
He underlined that the UAE's commitment is a great support to innovation, and added that the UAE and the US are already collaborating in space research technology with the Al Amal probe.
Selig revealed that the UAE and the US governments will be signing a MoU on an innovation partnership.
"Innovation will lead to great opportunities in many fields, especially healthcare," he said. "A modern responsible government has been identified as one to achieve citizen gains," he said.
Selig noted that $1.2 billion were required to expand the education sector, to help on early education and innovation. "The governments of the future have every aspect of governance being redefined," he said.
Selig highlighted the need for a "deep commitment" to intellectual property. He said that innovation was helping in redefining responsible government, and that the US and its partners should develop friendly relationship with its partners.
"Our countries can learn from each other," he said. "The summit will help the 150 countries here to improve," he said, "and make our citizens more responsible."
The fourth edition of the World Government Summit is being held from 8th to 10th, February, 2016, in Dubai.
Jim Yong Kim, President of The World Bank Group, addressed delegates on Day 1 of the World Government Summit in Dubai.
He noted that this was his first visit to Dubai, and he was impressed with what Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum had created. "We will learn from you and stand by your side as you continue to accomplish. What we cannot imagine, we are sure, Sheikh Mohammed, you are already achieving and planning," he said.
"I pledge the World Bank Group will continue to learn from you and share your successes here with other countries around the world," he said.
He said the World Bank has been trying to reduce poverty for more than 60 years now. "Good government is the foundation of all governance. It is fundamental to creating opportunity for all," he added.
Kim said that there were 1 billion people living in poverty, with 700 million people living below $2 per day. "Shaping government will help to achieve our goal to end poverty by 2030," he said.
Kim noted that global warming had resulted in 2015 being the hottest year in history. "Mena (Middle East and North Africa) has been badly affected by lower oil prices," he added.
In addition, he said political conflicts had impacted 15 million people. "We should shape governments to deal with such situations," he said.
"Inclusive government is based on three pillars: transparency, investment in people, and creating opportunities," he said.
"Today, half of Dubai's students are in good or premium schools. This is because of the great interest in education," he said and commended the UAE's education policy as well as inclusive governance. Education helps people to escape poverty, Kim noted.
"The greatest strength of Mena is its people, especially its youth," he said. "Educated women can be an effective part of society," he added.
"A government which invests in health and education holds great opportunity for its people. With a commitment to global law and transparency governments can make it easier to for us to collaborate and turn our ideas into reality. With a commitment to justice we can uphold the dignity of all people of all backgrounds," he said. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291338317.html

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Live on Twitter, Mohammad overhauls UAE Government

posted on 09/02/2016

In a major overhaul of the UAE's federal government structure on Monday, several ministries were restructured and new ministerial positions created to improve efficiency and effective delivery of services.
The sweeping changes were announced by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, during a live dialogue on Twitter as part of the three-day World Government Summit.
The new government will have fewer ministries, but more ministers handling national, strategic and dynamic portfolios.
"In the new structure of the federal government, we will have a roadmap for outsourcing most of the government services to the private sector,” Shaikh Mohammad said.
President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan has approved the largest structural changes in the federal government, he added.
The ministries restructured or merged include the ministries of education, higher education, health, labour, social affairs, environment and water, culture, foreign affairs and the cabinet affairs.
Youth
In a major initiative to harness energy of youth, a Council of Youth chaired by a woman Minister of State for Youth whose age is no more than 22 years will be established. The council will have a group of male and female members who will serve as advisers to the government on youth issues.
Similarly, a board of Emirati scientists, researchers and academics has been created to provide scientific advice and knowledge to the government.
In another significant announcement, a new post of Minister of State for Happiness will channel policies and plans to achieve a happier society.
"We introduced the post of Minister of State for Happiness whose mission is to channel policies and plans to achieve a happier society,” Shaikh Mohammad tweeted.
Tolerance
Another ministerial portfolio named ‘The Minister of State for Tolerance' was created to establish tolerance as a fundamental value of UAE society.
In other changes, the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Higher Education will be merged under one minister supported by two ministers of state.
An independent entity will be created to manage public schools that will be run by a dedicated board. "Public schools will enjoy a great level of power and independence,” Shaikh Mohammad tweeted.
The new entity will be tasked with achieving national educational goals. "We have extended the mandate of the Ministry of Education to supervise all levels from nurseries to higher education,” he added.
Shaikh Mohammad also announced the establishment of a Higher Council of Education and Human Resources to lead comprehensive change for the future.
Health
Shaikh Mohammad also announced a structural change in the Ministry of Health, which has been renamed as Ministry of Health and Prevention.
"We launched an independent entity to oversee and manage public hospitals,” he tweeted. The role of the ministry will evolve to focus more on the protection of society from diseases and preventing diseases, he added. The Ministry of Labour will also see changes as it will become the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation.
Tanmia, the national human resources development and employment authority, will be attached to the new ministry.
Shaikh Mohammad also announced that the Ministry of Social Affairs has been renamed the Ministry of Community Development. "We have also integrated the marriage fund in the Ministry of Social Affairs,” he said.
Environment
The Ministry of Environment and Water has been renamed the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, and the Ministry of Culture will become the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development.
The National Council of Tourism and Antiquities will be part of the Ministry of Economy, and the role of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been extended to oversee UAE's international aid.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will also include two ministers of state tasked with overseeing foreign aid and enhancing country's international relations.
The Ministry of International Cooperation and Development will become part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and will be called the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. The Ministry of Cabinet Affairs has been tasked with devising future strategies and to become The Ministry of Cabinet Affairs and The Future.
During the live conversation, Shaikh Mohammad also explained that the magnitude of the changes taking place and the high ambitions of the UAE people require a new way of thinking in terms of government structure and work mechanism.
"Change creates bigger opportunities and injects fresh blood and ideas. It compels everyone to think differently, and we will do whatever is good for our people,” he tweeted.
Skill-building

He called for a government that does not think of providing services only, but of building the skills of its citizens and providing an environment that encourages achievements.
"When we say we want a government that places human happiness as its priority and focus of concern, we mean every word,” he said.
Shaikh Mohammad highlighted that today we are at the beginning of a new era whose main themes are development of knowledge, supporting science and research and the use of exceptional young talent.
"We want a government that places man, family, education, knowledge and ambitions as the core of its agenda, a government that ensures fundamental rights of realising one's aspirations.
"We want a government whose main goal is building a utopian society, a tolerant environment, cohesive families, educated generations, and equal economic opportunities for all,” he tweeted.
Shaikh Mohammad described the last decade as one based on building policies, strategies, and tools. "The next 10 years will be a decade of confidently moving forward to the future with its changes, challenges, and competitiveness,” he said.
Key structural changes

New post of Minister of State for Tolerance created to establish tolerance as a fundamental value of the UAE society.
A board of Emirati scientists, researchers and academics set up to provide scientific advice and knowledge to the government.
The Ministry of Cabinet Affairs has been tasked with devising future strategies and will become the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs and the Future.
New post of Minister of State for Happiness created to channel policies and plans to create a happier society.
A Council of Youth will be established and chaired by a woman Minister of State for Youth whose age is no more than 22 years. The council will have an elite group of young men and women who will serve as advisers to the government.
Ministry of Health renamed Ministry of Health and Prevention.
Ministry of Social Affairs renamed the Ministry of Community Development.
Ministry of Labour renamed Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation.
The Ministry of Culture renamed Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development.
Ministry of Environment and Water renamed the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment.
Ministry of Social Affairs renamed the Ministry of Community Development.
Ministry of Education and Ministry of Higher Education will be merged under one minister supported by two ministers of state. Mandate of overseeing nurseries moved to the Ministry of Education.
National Council of Tourism and Antiquities will be part of the Ministry of Economy.
The role of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs expanded to include supervising the UAE's foreign aid. Two ministers of state will oversee foreign aid. – Gulf News - http://gulfnews.com/news/uae/government/live-on-twitter-mohammad-overhauls-uae-government-1.1668607

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#WorldGovSummit.. Mohammed bin Rashid honours winners of Emirates Innovative Teacher Award

posted on 09/02/2016

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, affirmed that the Emirates Innovative Teacher Award was launched to recognise the teacher's valuable message and vital role in bringing up generations who can build a good society and a developing nation.
'The government places development of education as one of its top priorities,' H.H. Sheikh Mohammed said in a ceremony to honour winners of the AED 1 million Emirates Innovative Teacher Award as part of day one events of the ongoing three-day World Government Summit in Dubai. The award is given to an exceptional teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession in the UAE.
'The UAE is adopting a development and modernisation policy that primarily focuses on making investment in human being - the key pillar for the progress of both, the community and the state,' H.H. stressed.
'Teachers are the main actors who build a capable, qualified and successful human being. They instil passion for learning, success, and loyalty to serve the nation in the future generations. They equip students with skills and capacities to be future leaders and nation builders."
Ebtisam Al Shemeili, a physics teacher at Al Ro'ya School in Ras Al Khaimah, won the award for her innovative achievements in renewable energy applications.
Four runners-up Noora Saeed Al Shehi, Samah Hamdan, Amnah Abdullah Al Zaabi and Nadia Saeed Al Kaabi were also honoured for their outstanding performance.
The Ministry of Education and GEMS Education has launched the award to raise the stature of the teaching profession, so that children can dream of becoming great teachers. Organisers say they seek to celebrate the best teachers those who inspire their students and the community around them.
In line with the UAE Vision 2021 National Agenda, to ensure that the UAE has a "first-rate education system, the UAE Innovative Teacher Award underlines the importance of the teaching profession, recognizing and celebrating great teachers so that today's brightest and best students look at teaching as a profession of choice." – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291339184.html

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#WorldGovSummit.. World Economic Forum Executive Chairman: UAE can become role model for future

posted on 09/02/2016

The UAE is already doing well in the competitiveness report, and has the capability to become a role model for the future, said Prof. Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum.
Schwab further added that the UAE could set an example for the world.
Professor Schwab addressed the opening day of the World Government Summit 2016 through a session entitled "The Dawn of the Fourth Industrial Revolution." His address stressed the role of the government in shaping the future for next generations.
A tsunami of changes in technology have brought about the advent of the fourth Industrial Revolution mandating governments to absorb these changes.
Highlighting that the concept of the fourth Industrial Revolution fusing the physical, digital, and biological sphere deals with the crucial and overwhelming changes that technology has brought in, Prof Schwab emphasized the three absolute changes that governments must undertake.
First, government must recognize their roles and foster innovation. Second, governments will need to reorganize themselves as platforms for innovation. The traditional hierarchical approach must be re-evaluated. Third, governments must recognize that the availability of human talent adds a valuable competitive advantage to nations.
Professor Klaus Schwab said: "Governments must put the whole emphasis on the development of human capital Capitalism is in some ways has been replaced by talent-ism."
Professor Schwab also added that the challenge lies in the fact that governments will need to re-scale and upscale their people and integrate all parts of population into the talent pool.
To overcome the traditional ways of governing, governments must keep pace with fast changing systems and uphold long term visions. Government entities must also embrace changes with passion and function as a compass to guide its people.
Professor Schwab added: "The new technological transformation can serve as an entry card for humanity to step into a new civilization. It is this concept that underlines our aspiration for mankind to shape planet earth into a real human place. This task is a united responsibility to create a more sophisticated and enlightened humanity. This is directly in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, who has emphasized that the UAE government's focus will be to ensure the happiness of its people."
The World Government Summit has convened over 3,000 personalities from 125 countries. The summit seeks to explore more than 70 topical issues through the participation of world leaders, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics, and university students. A number of initiatives, reports and studies will also be launched during the three-day summit and throughout the year. World Government Summit is set to conclude on February 10 at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291333817.html

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#WorldGovSummit.. Saif Bin Zayed: The Integration Doctrine serves as a bridge between the past and the future

posted on 09/02/2016

Lt. General H.H. Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, emphasised that the ongoing national achievements made by the United Arab Emirates across the various sectors, personifies the 'Doctrine of Integration' embraced by late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, May God Rest his Soul, and his brethren, the founding fathers of the UAE, builders of the Union. This approach was upheld by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, who continues the march towards further prosperity and construction.
His Highness Sheikh Saif praised the diligent national efforts made by wise leader, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, assisted by his brothers, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces ; along with their brethren, their Highnesses Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates.
He said: "The integrated efforts of our wise leaders, with the support of the various segments of society, serve as an impregnable wall and a well-established bridge that draws inspiration from the past's traditions to strengthen the foundations of the present, and to support the glories of the future."
Sheikh Saif expressed his confidence that the UAE's wise leadership enjoys the ability to use the realities of the present to shape the future, by embracing an Integration Doctrine in all aspects of political, economic, social, and intellectual life. He also confirmed the leadership's unrelenting endeavour to gain an Emirati foothold in tomorrow's world, regardless of challenges. Adding further, Sheikh Saif said: "The word ‘surprise' does not exist in the UAE's dictionary, which relies on wisdom, planning, determination, initiative and readiness. This reflects our firm belief that responding to crisis only when they occur means inevitable failure,"
Sheikh Saif said in an address at the World Government Summit that kicked off Monday in Dubai.
H.H. Sheikh Saif began his speech by expressing his heartfelt appreciation to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid for his wise leadership and his innovative generosity that contributed to the inclusive development of the UAE. H.H Sheikh Saif noted the importance of this summit, which has expanded its role on the international level, to become a global event that benefits the world's peoples and governments, thanks to the diligent efforts of the sponsors.
H.H. Sheikh Saif also added that the summit contributes to boosting the UAE's prestigious position in international forums; enhancing its reputation on the Global Competitiveness Index; and further promoting its civilized images among developed countries of the world.
H.H. Sheikh Saif shed the light on the importance of "Shaping the Future" through a short video showcasing the fire that broke out in the Address Hotel in Dubai on New Year's Eve. "The outcome of the incident is one of the aspects of shaping the future. This is what the UAE has worked towards achieving for years, to ensure full readiness and preparedness to handle such challenges and crisis," he said. H.H Sheikh Saif referred to the directives issued by H.H Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in 2003, in the wake of the Abu Dhabi Souq fire incident, which represents a major turning point in ensuring preparedness to similar incidents in an integrated manner. He noted: "Such an approach is based on the principle, which says that ‘responding to crisis only when they occur means inevitable failure'."
Adding further, H.H Sheikh Saif said: "An Integration Doctrine is key to shaping the future. The video footage, which shows the fire being brought under control, is testament to the integration efforts between the leadership, the government, community members from different backgrounds, and institutions (municipality, tourism, media, police, civil defence, etc.)" H.H Sheikh Saif indicated that this integration did not begin on December 31, 2015; it started back in 2003, with the successful design of the buildings and the area, coupled with good planning, readiness, and zero-hour proactive response.
H.H Sheikh Saif cited the example on how the Almighty God created our body parts that complement one another; all of which are fuelled by the heart and follow the command of the brain, in an integrated accurate and innovative system.
H.H Sheikh Saif continued: "The UAE has given the world a live example of its approach based on integration. The Address hotel guests were contacted within 72 hours, and they expressed a 98% level of overall satisfaction with the quality response, caution and unique efficiency in dealing with the incident, while maintaining public safety." H.H Sheikh Saif extended his heartfelt thanks to media outlets that covered the incident in complete transparency, and expressed his regret for media outlets that bet on the UAE's failure to proceed with the New Year's celebrations. He said: "Our ‘Integration Doctrine' has proved them wrong. We draw lessons from other people's experiences and from our own mistakes, in order to allow UAE citizens and residents to enjoy prosperity and stability."
H.H Sheikh Saif seized the opportunity to congratulate the UAE. He said: "Allow me to congratulate the leadership, government and people of the UAE, and tell them that the UAE will remain the home to one of the most prestigious areas in the world, thanks to an exceptional leadership that embraces the Integration Doctrine. I would also like to seize this opportunity to greet our friends who called us and offered assistance during the incident, notably Mr William Bratton, New York City Police Commissioner. This demonstrates the deep-rooted relations we enjoy with the rest of the world, and proves that Mr Bratton is a keen supporter of Integration."
Lt. General H.H. Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, said, "Governments and states forge their own doctrines and chose whatever suits them. There are positive doctrines and negative doctrines, such as the individual doctrine and the dominating doctrine. However, the UAE President has chosen a doctrine that unites rather than divides; a doctrine that seeks to build rather than destroy. This is the Emirati Integration Doctrine, which was built on exceptional leadership, progressive patriotism and investing in human resources. As a result of this Integration Doctrine, the UAE has made big achievements on par with other world countries on the Competitiveness Indices in the political, social, economic, security, and tourism areas, among others."
Sheikh Saif discussed the Integration Doctrine in politics. He said, "Based on the Integration Doctrine adopted by the founding forefathers, the union grew to become the strong entity it is today. Our country has become the first country in terms of giving and generosity compared to its national income. With your faith and the Integrated Doctrine of our brothers, the Gulf Cooperation Council was established to answer the call that emanated from Abu Dhabi. With the Integration Doctrine, the United Arab Emirates continues its support for the legitimate government in Yemen. We are proud of our leadership who made the decision, our brave armed forces who executed it, and our heroes, members of the armed forces who manifested this doctrine; even the retirees who never hesitate to answer the call of duty."
Sheikh Saif also stressed that the UAE's participation in the Yemen war was not for the sake of waging wars or causing destruction, but as a response to the call of duty, in order to restore hope and rebuild the brotherly and neighbouring country of Yemen. Additionally, he reviewed the milestones realized in Yemen and the infrastructure rebuilding achievements within the education, health, security, police, and civil defence sectors, among others.
"Despite the tough decisions taken recently by the UAE and the rest of the world, local achievements have not ceased, as we continue to foster ties with citizens of brotherly and friendly countries around the world," Sheikh Saif added. "Emirati people can now enter over 100 countries without a visa or by obtaining a visa upon arrival." Sheikh Saif extended his gratitude to H.H Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs, for his efforts, and to the people of the UAE for their positive behaviour abroad, which promotes their reputation and level of civilized manners, both domestically and internationally.
Furthermore, H.H. Sheikh Saif addressed the Integration Doctrine in society. He said, "Some countries fear or hesitate to invest heavily in human capital; this is an attitude we refuse in our Integration Doctrine. The doctrine highlights the need to develop human capabilities to their highest capacities by educating and employing them, and instilling values of national loyalty and belonging."
H.H. Sheikh Saif also pointed out the importance of the noble initiative of selecting young male and female ministers from the UAE's universities to take part in and join the cabinet. He explained that once the national service law was approved, the UAE's sons and daughters volunteered, driven by sincere feelings of love, to answer the call of duty; vowing to protect their country and proudly answer the leadership's call.
H.H. Sheikh Saif also talked about the families of martyrs, especially their mothers, who displayed unique feelings of patriotism and sacrifice as some of them asked to send their other children to join the fight. The wounded soldiers also showed similar feelings by imploring their leaders to allow them to return to the battlefield. H.H. Sheikh Saif said, "The Integration Doctrine could be clearly seen when individuals and society as a whole rose to support the leadership's decisions, sacrificing everything, most notably their lives, to prove this." Praying to God Almighty to grant the martyrs eternal peace in heaven, H.H. Sheikh Saif thanked individuals and entities of private and public sectors for their contributions in this regard.
H.H. Sheikh Saif addressed the Integration Doctrine in economy. He invited the audience to watch a video of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum in 2008, where he expresses his deep faith in Dubai's ability to overcome the international financial crisis with his belief in the dedication and will of the Emirati people. Sheikh Saif commented, "Indeed Your Highness, we are strong, dedicated, and confident; we managed to turn the international financial crisis into a bright success story." H.H. Sheikh Saif also noted that the Integration Doctrine, "Shaping the future" and the hard work needed towards realizing a better future for the next generations, encouraged the UAE to invest in alternative energy, sustainability projects, and economic diversification amongst other projects, in spite of the UAE's oil reserves.
Sheikh Saif cited the Masdar's Renewable Energy Seawater Desalination Program, as a living example of sustainability programs executed by the UAE. He noted: "Every produced gallon costs AED 3.3, according to the program, which is less than the cost price of traditional energy. The program produces approximately 1,500,000 litres per day.' Sheikh Saif also highlighted a number of international indicators, which demonstrate the prestigious position of the UAE, which has been ranked ahead of leading countries around the world. He said: "The UAE has ranked first in the world in public trust in government; it has ranked second globally in ‘Quality of Government Decisions', for its ‘Public Trust in Politicians' and ‘Global Reputation'. It has also ranked fifth globally in Economic Diversification; and seventh globally in the ‘Entrepreneurship Index'." He pointed out that the Emirati Integration Doctrine will continue to build a better future for the UAE; regardless of challenges, because we have a united country, a vision that is years ahead of its time; and sufficient will to achieve it.
In conclusion, H.H. Sheikh Saif said: "With the grace of Allah the Almighty, and under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, just like we extinguished the Address Hotel fire and prevented the flames from spreading, to maintain the reputation of Burj Khalifa area as the world's most prestigious area, we will manage to end the war in Yemen and preserve our dream to see the Gulf area remain a safe, prosperous and unified region, free from any harmful interference. Thanks to wisdom of the political leadership of the UAE, and the determination of our men and fellow brothers in the Arab Coalition Forces led by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Yemen will soon become safe and happy".
Sheikh Saif bin Zayed proposed three topics that are related to today's theme, i.e., the Integration Doctrine, notably, Investment in Human Resources" that was tackled in the 2013 summit, as the major pillar of the institutional system, and the core essence of development. The second topic was "Exceptional Leadership", which was tackled by the 2014 summit, as the UAE was blessed with exceptional leaders throughout its history. The third topic was "Progressive Patriotism", which was addressed in the 2015 summit, as an expression of loyalty and dedication for the country and its interests. Those integrated proposals, as envisioned by His Highness, constitute a single system, by which several achievements can be made by nations that anticipate the future and prepare for it. "The principle of integration embraced by the UAE as a doctrine to govern the mechanism of work at the level of management, practice, planning and others, is becoming a widespread approach for the different areas of public activity within the country and the community.
Later, Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, met separately with Salamah Hammad, Jordanian Minister of Interior, and Mr Iskander Mulikov, Minister of Interior of the Republic of Turkmenistan.
The meetings took place on the side-lines of the World Government Summit, which commenced this morning in Dubai, with participation of 3,000 participants from more than 125 countries. The summit will continue for 3 days, under the slogan "Shaping Future Governments".
During the meetings, several topics related to the World Government Summit were discussed, in addition to ways to enhance bilateral relations in fields of mutual interest between the UAE, and both Jordan and Turkmenistan.
Sheikh Saif also met with Emile Perez, Director Inspector General of the International Cooperation Department, and Maria Angeles Muñoz and Velsa Lerando, members of the Spanish Senate, on the side-lines of the World Government Summit, which commenced this morning in Dubai, under the slogan "Shaping Future Governments".
During the meeting, a number of topics related to the World Government Summit were discussed. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291344035.htm
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291344227.html
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#WorldGovSummit.. Dubai has Potential to become ‘City of the Future’ by fostering culture of discovery, affirms Neil deGrasse Tyson at WGS 2016

posted on 09/02/2016

Dubai, 9th February, 2016 (WAM) - The most fertile times in the history of civilizations come from a culture of discovery, which was prevalent in the Arab world for centuries over a thousand years ago during the Golden Age of Islam, according to Neil deGrasse Tyson, Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History.
His comments were made at an inspiring talk titled ‘Science of Today: Technology of Tomorrow', on the inaugural morning of the fourth World Government Summit (WGS 2016).
"Science pride and scientific literacy pushed the Arab world to make several significant innovations in the fields of astronomy, algebra, navigation and math. Over two thirds of all stars have Arabic names and the words algebra, algorithm find their origins in the Arabic word al-jabr. If the region had sustained this pace of discovery, it would've produced Nobel Laureates every year," said deGrasse Tyson.
During the session, the astrophysicist enumerated several examples of technological advances that are rooted in scientific discoveries made over the past century and promoted a culture for pure exploration as the foundation of modern day innovation.
He drew parallels between the United States in 1960s, which was termed the ‘Time of Technological Hope' and present day United Arab Emirates (UAE). Similarities begin with the two nations being at the cusp of launching important space missions, for which the backbone is scientific discoveries that lead to technological innovation.
deGrasse Tyson highlighted the technology in modern medicine and smartphones, which are rooted in the US space programme, ranging from miniaturization of electronics and GPS to the internet, MRI and laser technology. He cited the UAE's 2021 Mars mission - al-Amal – that is expected to influence the nation's scientific literacy and serve as a catalyst in bringing about scientific breakthroughs.
He compared the New York World's Fair in 1964 and its impact that brought science into the forefront of culture across the US to the potential that EXPO 2020 holds for bringing science to the mainstream in the Arab world, reaffirming Dubai's role as the City of the Future that everyone imagined they would live in, in the 1960s.
Drawing the connection between government and science, he stated that science is an endless frontier, a never-ending journey and its power and potency knows no bounds in its ability to serve governments. He cited examples of the formation of prominent scientific agencies such as NIH, CERN and NASA, which are backed by governments from across the world.
deGrasse Tyson also highlighted the role that recognition plays in motivating scientists and encouraging young minds to foster curiosity, scientific pride and a culture for exploration.
Acknowledging the role of the private sector in promoting scientific research and development (R&D), he commended multinationals such as Google, Facebook and Apple, which make significant contributions towards research that focuses on technology innovations for the immediate future.
He concluded that in contrast, governments need to prioritize budgets for research and development, led by the purpose of pure exploration with a view to fuelling scientific advancement that has long-term ramifications for the progress of civilizations, without the need to produce immediate results.
The World Government Summit has convened over 3,000 personalities from 125 countries. The summit has lined up more than 70 topics for discussion through keynote speakers and major interactive sessions, drawing the participation of world leaders, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics, and university students. A number of initiatives, reports and studies are also set to be launched during the summit and throughout the year. WGS 2016 runs from February 8 – 10 at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -
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Al Gergawi: Mohammed bin Rashid believes that shaping future governments is essential, rather than complementary, for all governments #WorldGovSummit

posted on 09/02/2016

Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs and Chairman of the Organising Committee of the World Government Summit, delivered the opening address at the fourth edition that opened today under the overarching theme, "Shaping Future Governments".
Al Gergawi said that this year's summit has originated from the grand vision and wise leadership of the President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who leads the nation to emerge as an international centre of knowledge, a real platform for positive change in the world.
He added that the summit is held under the patronage and direct supervision of Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who believes that forward-looking approach and preparedness for new developments and exploration of what the coming years may have in store are not merely complementary works for governments but the most important basics, as governments that are not prepared for the future would certainly waste wealth, future and years of time of many generations to come.
Al Gergawi welcomed the official delegations from participating countries and international organisations, including the United Nations, the World Bank, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Economic Forum, as well as the academics, media, experts and private sector leaders in attendance at the summit.
He said that the summit's fourth edition has undergone major changes in its name, content, philosophy, method of sessions and the mechanisms of exchange of knowledge across different platforms, explaining that the most important change is its transformation from an annual event to an international institution simply because an annual event is just not enough to shape the future as it requires intense daily efforts.
"Today we begin the proceedings of the summit, but it will not end after three days," he said. "We will continue to communicate with you and the march of research and knowledge will continue to move forward. The meetings and exchange of experiences will continue throughout the year, because we always wanted to be a part of the future, influencing it and not getting influenced by it, while keeping abreast of the changes and not being resistant to them," he added.
The minister went on to say that human beings will always pursue happiness, therefore, the message of all governments should be the happiness of humanity. "This is the vision we have set out for our government in UAE, and this is what Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has identified as an indicator of the performance of all our works and our projects," he added.
The World Government Summit has convened over 3,000 personalities from 125 countries. The summit seeks to explore more than 70 topical issues through the participation of world leaders, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics, and university students. A number of initiatives, reports and studies will also be launched during the three-day summit and throughout the year. World Government Summit 2016 is set to conclude on February 10th at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291320946.html

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#WorldGovSummit. Five things Arab governments should act on now: says GCC Secretary-General

posted on 09/02/2016

GCC Secretary-General Dr. Abdullatif Al Zayani has called upon the Arab countries to adopt a clear vision and objectives to achieve the desired future and overcome the difficult stage witnessed by the Arab nations Speaking at the World Government Summit in Dubai today, Al Zayani called on Arab governments to focus their efforts on five key challenges to prepare itself for the future. Al Zayani said that the Arab world needs a clear vision.
'The Arab world must prepare itself for the future and retrieve it's unity and reunite again and speak with the same voice."
He also added that the Arab nations should ensure safety and security. "Arab nations need to provide a safe and secure environment for all Arab citizens." he added.
GCC Chief also pointed to the third factor which is to eradicate terror. He said that Arab countries should eradicate terrorism and fight it by drying up terrorist funding and putting an end to all atrocities by adopting an international police, media, economic and in all fields, local, regional and international cooperation."
Regarding the fourth factor, he said, "There is need to mobilise Arab governments and people to provide assistance to millions of displaced population and refugees from Palestine, Syria and Libya. We cannot accept Syrian children dying of hunger and war or drowning in the Mediterranean. We need unified efforts to provide human relief to all."
According to the 5th factor, Al Zayani said that to prepare for the future, Arab nations need to ensure peace in the Arab world and national reconciliations. "We will need to reconstruct a lot of Arab countries so the Arab people will live with more hope in the future and enjoy human rights." he reiterated. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291345356.html

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#WorldGovSummit. Dubai reaffirms commitment to producing 75% of its energy from clean sources

posted on 09/02/2016

Leading a panel discussion on the future of clean energy in the region at the fourth World Government Summit (WGS 2016), Saeed Mohammed Al-Tayer, Managing Director & CEO of DEWA, and Joe Kaeser, President and CEO of Siemens, discussed the region's commitment to reducing costs and improving the efficiency of renewable energies.
During the discussion, Al-Tayer reaffirmed Dubai's commitment to producing 75% of its energy from clean sources. Under the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy, the emirate aims to increase the renewable energy mix in Dubai and increase production of clean and renewable energies to 7% by 2020 and 25% by 2030.
Towards reaching these targets, Al-Tayer highlighted DEWA's plans to implement an AED-7 billion five-year Smart Networks and Meters Project strategy, which aims to replace all mechanical and electromechanical water and electricity meters in Dubai with state-of-the-art smart meters benchmarked against the latest global technological specifications. He also mentioned DEWA's objective to bring Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) technologies within the next three years.
Commenting on DEWA's future plans, Al-Tayer said, "We will continue to adopt the best technologies and real time solutions to enhance operational efficiency and enhance the quality of services we offer to our customers."
For his part, Kaeser commended the UAE and the region's efforts for their forward thinking strategies and their commitment to implementing smart solutions for the future. When asked about the decrease in oil prices and its impact on renewable energies, he said that oil price volatility did not affect the region's commitment to clean energy sources.
"To continue the progress of the renewable energy sector, we must look at what we can do to reduce costs, improve efficiencies and present clean energies as a feasible business," said Kaeser.
The President of Siemens went on to discuss Germany's failed approach to clean energies and the lessons learned from this experience.
"The German government rightfully decided to remove itself from the nuclear business and diverted its attention to renewable energy, a plan that was executed poorly. Germany spent an unnecessarily large sum of money on subsidies for renewable energy alone instead of allocating some of these funds to innovative ideas and solutions that reduced costs of these technologies and improved their efficiency. From this experience, we have learned that it is critical to have a clear vision and understanding of the challenges and the foresight to ask the right questions that will bring about meaningful and feasible solutions. We cannot solely focus on one energy source or strategy, but instead must look into investing in the right mix of energy sources."
Agreeing with Kaeser, Al-Tayer reiterated Dubai's commitment to implementing a holistic approach with regards to optimizing the emirate's energy sector.
He said: "Dubai will continue to support a fuel mix, where we will continue to develop and produce coal, nuclear and solar energies. We will not depend on one source."
With a total investment of AED 50 billion, DEWA's Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest single-site solar project in the world, will produce 1,000MW by 2020 and 5,000MW by 2030. Once complete, the solar park will reduce 6.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually.
Adding to DEWA's future projects, Kaeser discussed Siemen's US$8billion power-plant deal to build gas and wind power plants aimed boosting Egypt's power production. Siemens will deliver three ready-to-use gas-steam power plants with a capacity of 4.8 gigawatts each. The plants, which will go into operation in stages starting in the summer of 2017, which will have a total capacity of 14.4 gigawatts.
"In addition to building these plants, we have also conducted an energy efficiency smart grid mapping of the entire country, bringing energy efficiency up and cutting losses in half."
With regards to the future of electric cars in the UAE, His Excellency Al-Tayer says that Dubai sees great value in alternative car models due to their ability to reduce fuel costs and carbon emissions. He said that DEWA had built more than 100 charging stations in Dubai and would continue to implement strategies that promote electrical car usage. Still not ready for private use, he said more time was needed to promote the product and change the mind-set of consumers.
In his concluding remarks, His Excellency Al-Tayer shared details about the SHAMS project, DEWA's first smart initiative to connect solar energy to buildings, thereby decentralizing the DEWA grid. Diversifying the energy mix by promoting the use of clean and renewable energy sources, the electricity generated and used on site and the surplus of power will be exported and connected to DEWA's network.
The World Government Summit has attracted more than 3,000 personalities from over 125 countries, and 125 speakers in over 70 sessions. The attendees include VIPs and senior experts from the public and private sectors globally, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics, and university students. A number of initiatives, reports and studies are set to be launched during the summit and throughout the year. The summit runs from February 8 – 10, 2016 at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291337052.html

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Lubna Al Qasimi confirms importance of enhancing food security support to developing countries and poor communities

posted on 09/02/2016

LONDON: Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development, MICAD, and Head of the UAE Committee for the Coordination of Humanitarian Foreign Aid, has said that the support for developing countries and poor communities to achieve food security contributes to promoting sustainable development options to meet the challenges facing individuals and peoples in the light of increasing signs about the lack of food supply due to growing climate change or refugees' situations resulting from increasing military conflicts and natural disasters.
This came when Sheikha Lubna met with Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Programme, WFP, on the side-lines of her participation in the fourth Syria donors' conference, which was held recently in the British capital, London.
MICAD said that during the meeting, Sheikha Lubna reviewed the UAE's efforts at the level of foreign aid under the guidance of its wise leadership, where a large portion of that aid is directed to support projects of food security in developing countries and poor communities, including funding and providing grants for the establishment of agricultural projects and related projects to improving and supporting food sources, such as dam building and the development of water resources, as well as to support investments in food manufacturing projects.
The meeting covered ways to boosting bilateral cooperation and partnership relations between the UAE and the World Food Programme, particularly in terms of enhancing coordination and cooperation to provide support to countries and regions, where the people suffer from increasing risk of food shortages.
The two sides also discussed ways to strengthen mechanisms of sustainable development in developing countries and support for the international community's efforts to achieve the goals of sustainable development, especially with increasing of population growth indicators in many developing countries and poor communities, and the paucity of natural resources, creating a challenge to meet the requirements and needs of the peoples in achieving food security.
The meeting was attended by Sultan Mohammed Al Shamsi, Assistant Under-Secretary of the Ministry for International Cooperation and Development, and Khalifa Shaheen Al Marar, Director of the International Organisations Department at the Foreign Ministry. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291317769.html

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FNC to discuss three bills on National Media Council, judicial fees, and fighting cyber crimes

posted on 09/02/2016

The Federal National Council, FNC, will discuss during its fifth meeting of the first ordinary session of the 16th legislative chapter on February 16th in Abu Dhabi, three federal bills concerning the organisation and terms of reference of the National Media Council, the judicial charges at the Federal courts, and the amendment of the decree as per Federal Law No. 05 of 2012 pertaining to the combatting of information technology crimes.
Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of Federal National Council, will open the meeting at the FNC headquarters in Abu Dhabi.
During the meeting, the FNC will review four international conventions and treaties signed by the government for the year 2016, which are Federal Decree No. 09 regarding the ratification of an agreement between the UAE Government and the Government of the United States to improve international tax compliance and the application of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), Federal Decree No. 10 pertaining to the ratification of an agreement between the UAE Government and the Government of the State of Kuwait regulating air services, Federal Decree No. 11 on the ratification of the agreement between the UAE Government and the Government of the Republic of Burkina Faso in regards to air services between respective territories and beyond, and Federal Decree No. 12 regarding the ratification of an air transport agreement between the UAE Government and the Government of Jamaica regarding air services between their respective territories and beyond.
The council will also review Federal Law No. 01 of the year 2016 regarding the additional approval of the General Union Budget, and independent party budgets thereto for the fiscal year 2015, which was issued during the council's report. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/general/1395291315042.html

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DP World reports gross container volumes growth of 2.4 percent on like-for-like basis

posted on 09/02/2016

Dubai's DP World , one of the world's biggest port operators, on Monday said its 2015 annual gross container volumes rose 2.4 percent across its global portfolio of container terminals on a like-for-like basis and increased 3 percent on a reported basis.
Gross volumes totalled 61.7 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) in 2015, up from 59.9 million TEU in 2014, the company said in a statement.
Annual consolidated volumes, at terminals over which DP World has control, were 29.1 million TEU, up 1.7 percent on a like-for-like basis and 2.7 percent higher on a reported basis.
Growth in 2015 was largely driven by European and UAE terminals. The portfolio benefited from the ramp-up in London Gateway and the UAE handled a record 15.6 million TEUs, representing like-for-like growth of 2.3 per cent for the year.
Utilisation at Jebel Ali remained high at approximately 90 per cent despite the softer volumes in the fourth quarter of 2015. Market conditions in the second half of 2015 were challenging, with like-for-like gross throughput growth flat year-on-year in Q4, 2015, DP World said.
DP World Group chairman and chief executive officer Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem said: "The second half of 2015 was difficult for global trade operators, as various economic headwinds including currency weakness and lower commodity prices adversely impacted trade growth. Against this challenging backdrop, all our three regions continued to deliver full year volume growth on a like-for-like basis which demonstrates the strength of our portfolio."
Bin Sulayem added that despite the uncertain near-term macro environment, and given the high utilisation at our portfolio, DP World remains confident about the medium to long-term outlook of our industry and continue to invest to meet the future capacity requirements of our customers.
"As we look ahead into 2016, we look forward to the new capacity at Rotterdam (Netherlands), Mumbai (India), Prince Rupert (Canada) and Yarimca (Turkey) to deliver a full year contribution to our throughput," he said.
The third berth at London Gateway (UK) is expected to open in mid-2016, adding 600,000 TEU of new capacity. The additional 2 million TEU at terminal three (T3) Jebel Ali (UAE) will be operational in the second half of 2016. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/economics/1395291301741.html

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UAE-Egyptian military co-operation discussed

posted on 09/02/2016

CAIRO: Lt. General Hamad Mohammed Thani Al Rumaithi, Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces and his accompanying delegation, who are visiting Cairo, met, separately, with Minister of Defence and Military Production of Egypt, Lt. General Sedki Sobhi and the Chief of Staff of Armed Forces of Arab Republic of Egypt, Lt. General Mahmoud Hegazy.
During the two meetings, they discussed co-operation between the two countries especially in the military, fighting terrorism and restoring security and stability in the Middle East region in the light of the partnership between the two countries in a number of fields.
While meeting with Egypt's Minister of Defence, Al Rumaithi expressed the UAE people's pride at the role being played by the Egyptian Armed Forces to lay the foundations of security and stability in the region.
They also tackled the joint visions and efforts towards various issues regarding the strategic partnership ties and joint work between the two fraternal countries.
Meanwhile, Hegazy confirmed the Egyptian Armed Forces' keenness on enhancing co-operation in domains and pillars of the Arab common work to address the current challenges that represent a threat to the peoples of the region. He also highlighted the strong and strategic Egyptian-UAE ties in a number of fields.
On his part, Chief of Staff of the UAE Armed Forces hailed the UAE-Egyptian military co-operation and continued co-ordination to combat various risks and threats faced by the region.
A number of top military commanders on both sides attended the meetings. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291338948.html

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Yemen's army advances towards Sana'a

posted on 09/02/2016

RIYADH: After having tightened its grip over the Ghailama region, located in Mahali valley, the Yemeni army, assisted by the popular resistance, is advancing towards the capital, Sanaa, officers said yesterday.
The Saudi Press Agency, SPA, quoted a statement from the state-run Yemen News Agency, as saying that according to a military source, the army and the popular resistance have thwarted a counter-attack by the Houthi militias in the Masoura region following fierce battles during which a rebel leader and a number of soldiers were killed. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/international/1395291309308.html

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Yemen needs US$65 m to rebuild damaged houses in Aden

posted on 09/02/2016

ADEN: Some 14 billion Yemeni Rial (US$ 65 million) are needed to rehabilitate and rebuild houses destroyed by war in Yemen, a senior Yemeni has said.
Yasser Al Serari, Director of Public Works Office, Governorate of Aden, made his remarks following a visit by Mohammed Shazli, Undersecretary of the Governorate, to the Office to review progress of work of a team assigned to assess and document damage caused by the barbaric war being waged by the rebel Houthi-Saleh militias.
He said the team has documented damage to 1090 houses up to the end of December 2015. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/arab/1395291344652.html

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Saudi Air Defence Forces intercept ballistic missile launched from Yemen

posted on 09/02/2016

RIYADH: The Command of the Coalition to Support Legitimacy in Yemen has announced in a statement that Royal Saudi Air Defence Forces intercepted a ballistic missile launched from Yemeni territories at dawn yesterday towards the Asir region, where it was destroyed in midair without causing any damage.
According to the Saudi Press Agency, SPA, Air Force jets reacted immediately to destroy the missile launch platform located inside the Yemeni territories. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/international/1395291313085.html

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Federal Supreme Court hears case of Hizbollah's affiliate group

posted on 09/02/2016

ABU DHABI, 9th February, 2016 (WAM) – The State Security Division of the Federal Supreme Court heard yesterday the case of three defendants of Arab and Canadian origin accused of establishing and running an international group affiliated to the Lebanese Hizbollah party inside the state without a permit from the government.
The defendant denied the charges levelled against them.
Presided over by Judge Falah Al Hajeri, the court adjourned the hearings to 15th February to listen to prosecutor witnesses at the request of the defendants' lawyers.
The defendants appeared before the court in the presence of the relatives, representatives of the media and a diplomat from the Canadian embassy in the UAE. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291332121.html

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ERC continues to respond to needs of displaced, refugees in Mali

posted on 09/02/2016

Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) has been carrying out a number of health, education and service projects to help stabilise displaced and refugees in northern Mali.
The move is part of a wider UAE developmental role to improve living conditions in Africa.
The ERC works in co-ordination with a number of international humanitarian organisations to address the challenges facing the local populations there. The ERC delegation will head soon to Mali to monitor the humanitarian situation closely so as to assess the urgent needs of people there.
In a statement, the ERC said its health projects in Mali aim to improve the health of mothers and children, especially the undernourished children under five and pregnant women. About 340, 600 children and 80, 000 pregnant women benefit from the ERC programme. About 95 percent will be vaccinated against a number of diseases. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291327056.html

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Over 300 Emirati students to help raise awareness on national history at Qasr Al Hosn Festival 2016

posted on 09/02/2016

Over 300 university students from across the Emirate of Abu Dhabi have been selected to act as Qasr Al Hosn Festival Ambassadors, and help enhance visitors' experience in learning about Emirati history and heritage during this year's annual Qasr Al Hosn Festival, being held until 13th February in Abu Dhabi.
The Qasr Al Hosn Festival, organised by Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, TCA Abu Dhabi, celebrates the history of the Fort and centuries of Emirati culture, by bringing people together to experience the history of the UAE through interactive experiences and storytelling and a rich and diverse programme of inspiring activities, live performances and workshops that reflect different cultural elements of the Festival programme Reem Al Mansouri, Public Engagement Programmer at TCA Abu Dhabi, said, "The Ambassador Programme is a vital initiative aimed at working with Abu Dhabi's younger generation to help raise awareness of the history, traditions and culture of the emirate dating back to the time when Qasr Al Hosn became the first permanent structure on Abu Dhabi Island. By involving the young, we are helping to transfer the knowledge of our rich heritage, and instilling a sense of pride and belonging among future generations."
Since its pilot in 2014, the programme has grown from attracting 160 in its first year to over 300 students this year.
"We've seen a 25% increase in participation number and the growing popularity of the Ambassador Programme shows the high level of enthusiasm we see from university students in learning more about the UAE's cultural heritage and their commitment to preserve it," Al Mansouri added.
A large number of students will be on-site during festival days to guide visitors throughout their visit. The students will interact with the audience in the Cultural Foundation Building and throughout the festival's themed zones and introduce them to the festival's public programme, helping with activities including dhow building, palm weaving, sea-shanties, falconry, tree climbing, and even making Gahwa (traditional Emirati coffee).
Amna Al Zaabi, a student from Paris-Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi who took part in last year's programme, said, "Being an Ambassador at the Qasr Al Hosn Festival is an amazing and rewarding experience and I was able to learn a lot about my heritage. I'm proud to return this year to share this knowledge with others and contribute to preserving our culture."
Students enrolled in the Ambassador Programme are receiving extensive training from cultural experts and Festival organisers, where they will learn about the history of the Fort, Emirati heritage, and the different elements of the Festival's workshops, cultural activities, traditional performances and interactive learning experiences.
Participating Ambassadors represent nine universities from across the Emirate, including Zayed University, United Arab Emirates University, the Higher Colleges of Technology, Paris-Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi, Al Hosn University, Emirates College for Advanced Education, the Petroleum Institute, Khalifa University, and Abu Dhabi University. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291308568.html

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Sharjah Light Festival adds splendour to the emirate’s magnificent mosques

posted on 09/02/2016

Sharjah Light Festival has put the spotlight on five of the most magnificent mosques in Sharjah – Masjid Al Noor beside Khalid Lagoon on Buhaira Corniche, Masjid Al Taqwa at Al Majaz Waterfront, Masjid Al Maghfira on the Sharjah Corniche Street, Masjid Al Qasimia University, and Al Dhaid's Masjid Ammar Bin Yasser.
These mosques, which stand out for their exquisite architectural styles, get a new splendour each evening as light creates innovative three-dimensional designs on them during the Sharjah Light Festival. The Sharjah Light Festival is being held from February 4th to 13th this year with daily shows from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays and until midnight on weekends.
This year, Masjid Al Noor on Buhariah Corniche gets wrapped in beautiful shapes by artist Mathilde Rouault, illustrating places and forms of art from around the world, while Masjid Al Taqwa features a show of travel by artist Cindy Lo, exploring different locations and scenery from the windows of a train.
Masjid Al Maghfira on the Sharjah Corniche Street hosts the show 'Original Maps', by artist Charlie Bayot, who transforms the mosque with graphical movements of light inspired by old world maps developed by Arab geographers from the Middle Ages.
Sharjah Light Festival has also drawn attention to the exquisite architecture of Masjid Al Qasimia University, which hosts the show, ‘Inspiring Islamic Architecture', and Masjid Ammar Bin Yasser at Al Dhaid with ‘A World of Colour' show.
Organised by Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, Sharjah Light Festival has entered its 6th year. The festival has added 10 new shows this year, bringing 23 unique experiences to the emirate. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395291314361.html

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ADM collects ton of waste during Yas Beach Clean-up Campaign

posted on 09/02/2016

Abu Dhabi City Municipality, ADM, in collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Centre for Waste Management, and Advanced Company (cleaning contractor of the municipality's premises), has recently conducted the Yas Beach Clean-up Campaign.
The campaign reflects the municipal system's keenness to provide clean beaches of world-class standards, protect the marine environment and maintain the appearance of Abu Dhabi beaches. It is also intended to promote a social responsibility culture, and bolster cooperation with partners in preserving the environment and maintaining the civilised appearance of the city.
The campaign, which witnessed the participation of the municipal employees from the Support Services Sector, was organised by Facilities and Security Division in partnership with the Abu Dhabi Centre for Waste Management (Tadweer), Advanced Company, and Averda Company for Waste Management.
The municipal campaign succeeded in collecting approximately one ton of various types of waste, including paper, plastic bags, and metal and glass containers, and all pollutants and distorting elements were removed from Yas Beach. The municipality provided all participants with the necessary cleaning tools such as gloves, garbage bags and trash pickers.
The municipality says that such campaigns achieve great results as they include programmes and projects implemented jointly with strategic partners in several areas including beaches, streets, tunnels and parks in order to ensure an ideal environment, and safe healthy community. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/general/1395291321769.html

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