His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, has said that the UAE is entering the future with “optimism”, and “our belief that we are on the right path has been reaffirmed,” adding in his statement on the occasion of the UAE’s 48th National that the country sets “no limits to its aspirations and trusts in its abilities, potential and unity.” In a statement to Nation Shield magazine, the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince added that the “UAE’s tremendous progress has been made possible by our unity, effort and great sacrifices.”
Below is the statement in full: Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “Another glorious national anniversary has dawned: the 48th anniversary of the union of our dear nation. The UAE’s achievements have touched the sky and fill our hearts with pride. The UAE is setting new standards in progress, regionally and internationally. Our country sets an example regarding the will to excel in all fields. The UAE is entering the future with optimism, and our belief that we are on the right path has been reaffirmed. Our country sets no limits to its aspirations and trusts in its abilities, potential and unity. It bets on its children, whom it regards as its most precious asset and an assurance of a bright future. The UAE opens its doors to cooperate with all those who desire the prosperity of mankind.
“On the 48th National Day we recall the past with its challenges as well as the sacrifices of our forefathers. We look at the present with our current achievements and the future with our hopes and ambitions to know where we stand and where we are heading. “The message I send to the people of the UAE on this great day for our nation is that the UAE’s tremendous progress has been made possible by our unity, effort and great sacrifices.
We will continue to flourish thanks to the devotion and dedication of our sons. We will continue our success story by holding on to the means of excellence and progress in all fields in a world that is rapidly evolving with ever-expanding challenges. You have been entrusted with a great responsibility that of your country so protect it always, fill it with pride at your achievements, and hoist its flag up high. “I say to parents, tell your children and grandchildren the story of this great nation and the struggle of our forefathers as well as their unstinting faith in our values and their sacrifices. Tell them about the long and difficult road that we walked until we arrived at the progress we see around us today. Sow in their hearts and minds love for our homeland and remind them that the UAE is, and will remain, strong and pioneering thanks to its children. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “On this historic day, we remember everyone who lay a brick in building our homeland and all those who toiled for the UAE to attain the progress and prosperity that is the envy of the whole world. We remember everyone who spilt their blood so that our flag would continue to fly high and who sacrificed so that we could live in security, stability and unity.
We remember our martyrs who made the ultimate sacrifice for their homeland and set an example for the rest of the world. We remember the Founding Father, Sheikh Zayed and his brothers, the Founding Leaders, who were devoted to their goal and mission and remained true to themselves and to their people. They did not seek personal glory nor did they have any vested interest. They did not abandon their dream of unity despite tremendous challenges and created a pioneering Arab unitary experience for others to follow. “Today, when one contemplates the wars and conflicts in our region and the problems that continue to plague many regional countries we greatly appreciate the significance of what was achieved here on December 2, 1971.
We remember the great leaders who achieved the dream of unity. Our unity has been the fence that has protected our nation and preserved its gains. It is the fortress that has withstood regional and international dangers and will continue to be the umbrella under which we strive to achieve our goals. “On this memorable occasion, the covenant for unity and solidarity will be renewed under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The UAE continues to set an example for how the people can wholeheartedly support their leadership. The UAE continues to serve as a beacon of unity and determination in the region and the wider world. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “Our citizens have been and will remain our top priority in all programmes and development plans at present and in future. Our Founding Fathers created a nation of unity for the development, well-being and happiness of all its citizens.
The words of Sheikh Zayed: “Wealth is not money or oil. Wealth lies in men. Money is of no use if it is not dedicated for serving the people”, remain the compass that guides us. His words provide the basic reference for all our development plans and help us measure the limits of our success and realisation of our goals.
“Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “On this glorious day, we salute our brave Armed Forces that have been and will remain the backbone of our national security and the symbol of the nation’s power and unity. Our Armed Forces have proved to be the shield of the nation, and the preserver of its gains. They have also ensured stability and peace in the region and are an active player in every regional and international effort to confront threats to regional and global security. The UAE has always been an advocate of peace and cooperation against conflicts and wars that drain resources and undermine the right of people to development and progress.
“We also applaud all branches of the security services; they keep a watchful eye on the nation’s security, provide reassurance and create a safe and stable environment so that development can take place. We salute its dedicated men who work day and night to preserve the UAE’s image as an oasis of stability and security in the region and the wider world. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “The UAE is a pioneer in sustainable development and has a clear strategic vision for the future that leaves nothing to chance. The country relies on planning, studies, initiatives and the belief that the future is being created now, and that those who fail to prepare for it will find themselves marginalised. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “Thanks to our pioneering development, our stable, tolerant and open society, and our modern infrastructure, the UAE has become an attractive destination for international investment and business. Young people from across the world seek to work and live here.
The UAE is ranked very highly in indices for regional and global competitiveness and human development. It is also highly regarded for its vision and development aspirations and has established international economic and trade partnerships to boost the UAE’s development and increase prosperity of it citizens. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “Each year, as we celebrate National Day we celebrate our achievements and pioneering projects that add to our success story. During 2019, the UAE created history by sending out the first Emirati into space. The UAE space project opened new frontiers for the country in September by sending out the first Emirati astronaut to the International Space Station. With space opening up for the UAE, we, the sons of Zayed, hope to send a mission to Mars and build a human settlement there. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “Soon, the UAE will operate the first nuclear reactor to produce nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, making it the first Arab country to do so. It is exploring the future of energy and seeks to promote renewable energy to ensure sustainable development for future generations. “Next year, the UAE will be the focus of the world with Expo 2020 Dubai, the first World Expo to be hosted in the Middle East and North Africa region. This testifies to the world’s confidence in UAE’s ability to organise major international events successfully, and lead global development, construction and peace initiatives. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “The UAE has been and will continue to be a force for stability, peace, development, goodwill and solidarity worldwide. In this context, it has the highest proportion of foreign aid to GDP in the world. “The UAE has played a leading role in confronting extremist ideology and the forces behind it through an institutionalised and organised movement that enjoys worldwide support.
It believes that religious, sectarian and ethnic hatred threaten human coexistence and undermine peace and stability. Not only does our nation offer a striking example of tolerance and coexistence among many different nationalities belonging to various religions, races and cultures, but it also works regionally and internationally to promote tolerance and dialogue among people through institutional effort.
The Human Fraternity Document signed during the February 2019 visit to the UAE of His Holiness the Pope and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar has been described as a blueprint to help future generations advance a culture of global mutual respect. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “The UAE is highly regarded on the world stage because of its balanced foreign policy and the wisdom with which it handles regional and international issues. Its relations with countries in the East and the West are strengthening because they are based on trust, mutual respect and common interests. They deepen bilateral strategic partnerships and reinforce political, economic, security and cultural ties. “The strengthening of UAE’s international relations, especially with major world powers, in recent times reflects the trust, respect and appreciation it enjoys abroad. These developments reflect a conscious political vision to expand areas of action to serve the UAE’s national interests and enhance its image and its role internationally.
“The UAE has always been, and will remain, on the side of just Arab causes as well as attempts to activate joint Arab action. It will side with its brothers in the face of challenges facing the Arab region, especially dangers posed by armed and terrorist militias and attempts to interfere in the internal affairs of regional countries.
The UAE chooses this path based on its responsibilities, as per the approach followed since the reign of Sheikh Zayed. “Dear brothers, sisters and sons, “Finally, I would like to extend my most sincere congratulations to His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and their brothers, Their Highnesses Members of the Supreme Council and Rulers of the UAE. I also congratulate the great Emirati people on the 48th National Day, praying to God Almighty to preserve our nation’s stability, dignity and strength.”