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UAE applauded for supporting women in parliament

posted on 05/05/2016

AMMAN: The Women in Parliaments Global Forum (WIP) has honoured the United Arab Emirates, in appreciation to the country's pioneering step of electing Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi as the first woman speaker in the Arab world and the Middle East.

Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of Federal National Council (FNC), who is currently heading the UAE's delegation to the WIP summit in Amman, received the certificate of appreciation yesterday.

The summit is being held in Jordan on 4-6 May under the theme 'Women in Politics: Fast Forward' and attended by 260 women parliamentarians from 89 countries to share experiences and best practices on the women's role in policy making.

In a statement made to Emirates News agency (WAM), Al Qubaisi said the UAE is reaping the fruits of the wisdom of the late Sheikh Zayed bin sultan Al Nahyan who supported the women and of the vision of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan who leads the drive to empower women.

She also underlined the pivotal role of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, whose continuous support enabled the Emirati women to make great achievements.

"We are proud of the international recognition of the UAE's pioneering initiative of supporting women in parliament. We are also grateful to our leadership and to our people who provide trust and confidence to women as active participants in the development process" she added.

Dr. Al Qubaisi said she was pleased with the honour, not only for the UAE women, but also for the Arab women.

"We are more optimistic now this will accelerate the efforts for empowering Arab women, especially in the field of political participation," she concluded. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Humanitarian policies should precede any political decisions, says Ruler of Sharjah

posted on 05/05/2016

KUALA LUMPUR: H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, has emphasised the importance of placing the interests of the homeland and its citizens at the top of the priorities of leaders and decision-makers in the region, stressing that humanitarian policies should precede any political decisions made by politicians.

The Ruler of Sharjah made these comments during a recent visit to Malaysia, where he met with Dr. Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah, Sultan of the Perak region. The visit comes in support of the friendly relations between the UAE and Malaysia, which have in recent decades witnessed further growth.

During the meeting, which was held at the Istana Iskandariah, or Perak Palace, the two sides reviewed the current reality of Islamic countries around the world, especially those facing war, political problems, and the international refugee crisis.

Dr. Sheikh Sultan Al Qasimi said that the religion of Islam is a source of love, tolerance, and coexistence regardless of race, colour and gender, and added that urgent international action is needed to protect refugees from homelessness, hunger and loss.

The Ruler of Sharjah and the Sultan of Perak also reviewed areas of joint cooperation between the Emirate of Sharjah and Malaysia, who both have leading developmental experiences regionally, and share similar visions on many key sectors, including in the field of dialogue among cultures and civilisations. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Sheikha Lubna commends National Policy for Reading

posted on 05/05/2016

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of State for Tolerance and President of Zayed University, has praised the directive of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan to start the legislative procedure of drafting a UAE National Reading Law, which aims to ensure the sustainability of all government efforts to consolidate reading in the UAE for all ages, as well as identify the key responsibilities of government agencies in the field.

The law comes as part of the National Policy for Reading in the UAE, which was announced yesterday at a press conference on the final day of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair.

In a statement on the occasion, Sheikha Lubna noted His Highness Sheikh Khalifa's comments on his direction to issue the National Reading Law: "The goal of the Reading Law is to provide a sound basis for lifelong learning for all members of our community and enhance the mental, intellectual and cultural assets of our people," and he added that "the policies and strategies of reading are the policies of nation-building and the consolidation of cultured people, preparing generations for making great strides in development to ensure excellence for the United Arab Emirates, enhance their competitiveness and achieve the vision of the future."

Sheikha Lubna commended the National Reading Strategy for the next 10 years, which was launched by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, saying that by this initiative, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed has drawn the road map for the establishment of a strong and solid foundation for a new future for the state, based on knowledge. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Saif bin Zayed witnesses signing of agreement paving way for Abu Dhabi to host Interpol Foundation World Bureau Headquarters

posted on 05/05/2016

Lt. General HH Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, attended on Wednesday the signing ceremony of the Joint Declaration between the UAE Ministry of Interior and the International Criminal Police Organisation (INTERPOL), paving the way for Abu Dhabi to host the Interpol Foundation's World Bureau headquarters.

The joint declaration was signed by Brigadier Hamad Ajlan Al Amimi, Director General of the Federal Criminal Police at the Ministry of Interior, and by Elias Murr, President of the Board of the Interpol Foundation for a Safer World.

Under the Joint Declaration, the United Arab Emirates will host the foundation's World Bureau headquarters in Abu Dhabi, in recognition of its prestigious stature and global presence. The bureau will be a global hub for the organisation's work in the region, and a platform to launch and manage a flurry of advanced projects. Through this platform, both parties will endeavour to develop the proper mechanisms and plans pertaining to the headquarters' operation and the establishment of the bureau's administrative system and organizational structure.

The signing ceremony was attended by Brigadier General Dr. Rashid Sultan Al Khodr, Vice Chairman of the Legal Council at the Ministry of Interior; Colonel Mohammed Hamid bin Dalmouj Al Dhaheri, Strategy and Performance Development Director General; Colonel Abdul Wahid Al Hammadi, Head of the Interpol Department at the Ministry of Interior; along with a number of officers and officials from the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL).

It is worth mentioning that the Interpol Foundation, part of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), aims to promote cooperation between world states, authorities, official and civil institutions to combat organized crime and to develop the organization and support it in every possible means, in a bid to establish justice and security across the world. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE voices deep concern over increasing incidents of targeting civilians in Syria

posted on 05/05/2016

CAIRO: The UAE has reiterated its deep concern over the escalation of attacks on civilians in Syria, especially in the city of Aleppo, including the government air force raids on hospitals and essential medical services in an unethical way, amid inhumane and dire conditions caused by the siege.

The world community should move quickly to stop this bloodshed in Syria, it added.

Khalifa Al Tunaiji, the UAE's Acting Permanent Representative to the Arab League made these comments before the extra-ordinary meeting of the Arab League at the level of permanent representatives, held yesterday at the Arab league's headquarters in Cairo to discuss serious escalation of atrocities in Aleppo, Syria.

The meeting was chaired by Rashid bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa, Bahrain Ambassador to Egypt and the Permanent Representative to the Arab League, in the presence of the Arab League Secretary General Nabil Al-Araby.

The UAE delegation included Hani Mohammed bin Huwaidin, from the UAE Embassy in Cairo, and a member of the permanent delegates to the Arab League.

Al Tunaiji said that in less than two weeks, the Council will meet to discuss the Syrian issue, and the brutal attack on the city of Aleppo. He added that the meeting came at the request of the State of Qatar and seconded by the UAE and a number of countries to tackle repercussions of the attack, which is deemed a serious development in the Syrian crisis.

He also pointed out that the UAE's concerns over undermining of the political process as a result of this unwarranted escalation against the civilian population, including a ceasefire agreement, which has contributed positively to the decline in violence in Syria.

The UAE official called for the warring parties in Syria to seek a sincere and honest approach for the success of the political process and to stop violence against civilians, as well as to facilitate the delivery of emergency relief aid in areas under siege.

Al Tunaiji added that the UAE has emphasised that the United Nations (UN) Security Council should implement its responsibilities, especially the implementation of resolution No. 2254 to stop the bloodshed in Syria. He added that UN should urge the Syrian government to abide by the ceasefire agreement and facilitate the entry of humanitarian aid to the besieged areas.

He pointed out that the UAE welcomes the efforts of international diplomacy aimed at renewing the truce in war zones, especially in Aleppo.

Al Tunaiji also reaffirmed the UAE's faith in a complete political solution to the crisis in Syria through international terms of reference and the need to comply with this framework away from escalation and violence. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Belarus exempts UAE citizens from pre-entry visa requirement

posted on 05/05/2016

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, has announced that the UAE's citizens could travel to the Republic of Belarus without the need for prior entry visa requirement, and can stay for a period not exceeding 30 days.

Ahmed Saeed Elham Al Dhahiri, Assistant Under-Secretary for Consular Affairs at the ministry, said the ministry received an official memo from the Embassy of Belarus in the UAE, stating that President of the Republic of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, signed a decision to exempt citizens of the UAE who hold special, mission and regular passports to enter the territory of Belarus without prior entry visa requirement, with immediate effect from 29th April.

The foreign ministry official stressed, "This decision shows the depth of relations between the UAE and Belarus in the light of the development of bilateral co-operation, on the one hand, and the UAE's international status on the other hand." – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


NMC takes part in Arab Media Forum in Kuwait

posted on 05/05/2016

The National Media Council, NMC, has participated in the 13th Arab Media Forum in Kuwait, which saw the attendance of a large number of Arab journalists and academics.

The two-day event which concluded on Monday was organised under theme ‘Media Basic Components and Challenges'.

During the forum, a number of Arab media and cultural figures were honoured, among those were Mohammad Al Momani, Jordan's Minister of State for Media Affairs and Ibrahim Al Abed, Adviser to NMC. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


ADNOC announces crude prices for April

posted on 05/05/2016

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, ADNOC, has announced its crude oil prices for April.

A company statement said that the prices are as follows: Murban US$42.00 per barrel, Das US$41.40, and Upper Zakum US$39.05 per barrel.

ADNOC announces its crude oil prices retrospectively on a monthly basis. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Etihad Airways’ flagship Airbus A380 launches daily service to Mumbai

posted on 05/05/2016

MUMBAI: Etihad Airways has announced the launch of its flagship Airbus A380 daily service to India's commercial capital, Mumbai.

India continues to be a crucial part of Etihad Airways' growth strategy contributing significantly to the airline's global operations, to job creation and to connectivity for India.

Addressing a media conference in Mumbai to mark the launch of Etihad Airways' daily A380 service to India's commercial capital, Etihad Airways Chief Commercial Officer, Peter Baumgartner, said that the airline had stimulated competition, created thousands of jobs, helped drive inbound tourism, and connected India to the world.

"Bringing our flagship product to India is further proof of its significance as a market, and more importantly, our commitment to the country's economy," added Baumgartner.

"The importance of Indian partner Jet Airways and the contribution of the Etihad Airways / Jet Airways partnership to the Indian aviation industry, also cannot be underestimated," he said.

"In Jet Airways we have a key ally, a strategic partner, and a true friend in the Indian skies that gives us the combined strength and enhanced competitive edge to provide what demanding consumers want today – greater choice, more travel options, better products and a superior travel experience," he explained.

Baumgartner was speaking as the airline celebrated the introduction this week of its Airbus A380, the world's largest passenger jet, on the Abu Dhabi – Mumbai route. The 496-seat aircraft features innovative products including the revolutionary, award-winning ‘The Residence' – a three-room suite comprising a living room, shower and bedroom among its four-class products.

He added: "With the aircraft upgrade, Etihad Airways is able to offer an all-A380 daily service in both directions between Mumbai and New York JFK International with a seamless connection over Abu Dhabi, along with the unique USA customs border protection which enables guests to pre-clear US customs at Abu Dhabi International Airport and arrive in the US as domestic passengers. The service is operated as a codeshare flight with Jet Airways.

"The 63 per cent growth in passenger traffic last year on both airlines to and from India is the result of hard work and close cooperation to provide an appealing product to travellers."

During 2015, 3.3 million guests were carried between India and Abu Dhabi on the combined networks, making the Etihad Airways / Jet Airways partnership the strongest, biggest and most diverse offering in Indian aviation. The two carriers have the largest international market share of any airline carrying 21 per cent, or 1 in 5 travellers, to and from India.

The airlines together operate 254 flights each week from 15 gateway cities across India to Abu Dhabi with connections to key destinations worldwide. Etihad Airways' current 11 Indian destinations to and from Abu Dhabi are: Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, New Delhi, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kochi, Kolkata, Kozhikode, Mumbai and Thiruvananthapuram. Jet Airways offers the additional Indian gateways of Pune, Lucknow, Goa and Mangalore, as well as numerous domestic connections as codeshare services with Etihad Airways.

Being a member of Etihad Airways Partners, a brand that brings together partner airlines to offer customers more choice globally, Jet Airways contributes to the world's seventh largest aviation group which carries more than 111 million passengers globally each year.

India is the third largest trading partner of the UAE. And the UAE is the 10th biggest foreign investor – and largest Arab partner.

Etihad Airways has nine per cent share of the Indian international freight market with 120,000 tons of cargo carried annually to and from India, fully endorsing and supporting the government's ‘Make in India' campaign. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Etihad Airways flight from Abu Dhabi to Jakarta encounters severe turbulence

posted on 05/05/2016

Etihad Airways flight EY474 from Abu Dhabi to Jakarta on 4 May 2016 encountered severe and unexpected turbulence about 45 minutes prior to arrival at Soekarno Hatta International Airport.

According to the statement issued by Etihad Airways yesterday, "The flight landed safely and passengers were met by medical assistance teams as they disembarked the aircraft."

It added a total of 31 passengers were injured. Twenty-two are being treated by paramedics for minor injuries at the airport. Nine other passengers have been taken to a local hospital.

"The turbulence also caused some damage to cabin storage areas," the statement said, noting that "We are providing all possible assistance to affected passengers." – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


ADM celebrates International Workers' Day in Mohamed bin Zayed City Park

posted on 05/05/2016

The Abu Dhabi City Municipality, ADM, has organised an event marking International Workers' Day at Mohamed bin Zayed City Park in collaboration with the Community Services Division and the Technical Division at Mussaffah Municipal Centre. The event featured the participation of Asa'ad Al Sha'ab Volunteer Team, an affiliate of the Women's Union in Sharjah, and the Hifz Al Ni'maa (Conserving Bounties) Project at Emirates Red Crescent.

A statement from ADM said that the festivities epitomise the noble human principles of the UAE, which accords due attention and care to all community members, including the labour force, and always seeks to enforce all international laws and practices related to workers. The UAE is also keen on nurturing an appropriate living and working environment, safeguarding workers' lives, ensuring their safety and the happiness of people.

The event also reflects the moral values and commitment of the Department of Municipal Affairs and Transport towards workers, and recognition of their efforts in boosting the comprehensive and sustainable development drive.

To realise these objectives, the Municipality regularly launches inspection campaigns targeting all occupational outlets as well as construction sites to ensure their compliance with the health and safety conditions under which workers are employed. The Municipality conducts numerous year-round educational workshops, aimed at raising workers' awareness level, and urging companies and foremen to nurture a safe, healthy and stable working environment.

At the end of the ceremonies, the Municipality honoured all workers by offering them gifts. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Julio Iglesias wows thousands of fans in Sharjah concert debut

posted on 05/05/2016

The internationally acclaimed Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter, Julio Iglesias, last night took to the stage at Al Majaz Amphitheatre in Sharjah, wowing and entertaining thousands of music lovers.

In his debut concert in Sharjah, held against the spectacular backdrop of the Buheirah Corniche, Iglesias treated his audience to a number of hit songs and chartbusters from his most popular albums as well as more recent ones, leaving his thousands of fans demanding for more.

Iglesias' music is known for its celebration of love, peace, tolerance and humanity, the values that are championed and cherished by Sharjah and the UAE. The Julio Iglesias concert is part of Sharjah's on-going efforts to promote a culture of arts and appreciation of music in the Emirate. Al Majaz Amphitheatre, managed by Sharjah Media Centre, is at the forefront of this movement to enrich the art and cultural scene in the UAE and the region, providing quality and healthy entertainment with a moral purpose to the public.

From Arab singers Majida El Roumi and Kadhim Al Sahir to Marcel Khalife and Western performers like Yanni and Julio Iglesias, Al Majaz Amphitheatre has hosted some of the biggest names in music from both the East and West to entertain music lovers in Sharjah and the UAE.

Earlier, speaking to journalists from the UAE, Iglesias said that music is the perfect instrument and platform to bring people together no matter what borders, colour or creed they represent and that he was happy to be part of Sharjah's efforts to promote understanding and dialogue between various cultures. The celebrated singer and song writer said he was "super excited" about returning to the UAE and performing at a great venue like Al Majaz Amphitheatre in Sharjah.

Al Majaz Amphitheatre was inaugurated by H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, in 2014 as part of the celebrations crowning Sharjah as the Islamic Culture Capital for 2014. The Roman colosseum style amphitheatre opened with the premiere of epic oratorio Clusters of Light, retracing the remarkable journey of Islam and its essential message of peace and humanity. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


VP views designs of Mohammed bin Rashid Stadium

posted on 05/05/2016

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum yesterday viewed designs of the 60,000 capacity Mohammed bin Rashid Stadium, which will be built in Al Aweer area in Dubai.

Sheikh Mohammed inspected various models of the AED 3 billion stadium. He was briefed by Matar Al Tayer, Deputy Chairman of Dubai Sport Council, about the project, the world's first fully air-conditioned and raised off the ground stadium. The stadium design complies with FIFA's standards.

Dar Al Handasah was selected as consultant and Perkins + Will as the main contractor for the stadium project.

The stadium will have 60,000 seats. Other facilities include a training hall, 5,000 car park, a sports museum and conference halls.

Sheikh Mohammed applauded the design and ordered execution of the project according to the scheduled timeline. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -