Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan
Most recently, during his remarkable speech H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) before the General Debate of the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York has outlined his country’s foreign policy objectives along with strong commitments to fight against Daesh and AI-Qaeda-affiliated groups. He rightly warned that it is a global risk against all states and communities.
He highlighted UAE’s deep concerns on the escalating tension and violence in the region resulting from the terrorist acts committed by elements deliberately aiming at destabilising the region and undermining its security Daesh, AI-Qaeda, Hezbollah, Ansar-Allah, and other groups, who exploit religion for political purposes.
He mentioned UAE’s participation and active role in establishing and hosting a number of international institutions countering extremism such as the Hedayah centre to help the international community in building capacities and exchanging the best practices in countering all forms of extremism.
He further mentioned that UAE hosted the Muslim Council of Elders and the Global Forum for Promoting Peace in the Muslim Societies with a view to spreading a culture of tolerance and peace and promoting convergence between faiths.
He also talked about the role, importance and responsibilities of the United Nations. He urged the United Nations to play a greater role in addressing the grave security challenges that risk threatening its achievements.
Foreign Minister narrated emerging geo-political and geo-strategic trends happening in the Middle East and particularly extremism, terrorism, interference in the internal affairs of States and non-respect for the sovereignty of States, demonstrate that United Nations has not yet fulfilled its primary objective of maintaining international peace and security.
He also spoke highly about the new chapter that builds on the achievements of the MDGs through the adoption of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda by Heads of State and Government. The UAE welcomes this ambitious Agenda and believes that it will transform the world over the next 15 years he, said.
During his speech he shed light on different regional and global geo-political and geo-strategic issues. He defended his country’s principal stances on Egypt, Yemen, Iraq, Syria and Iran. He also elaborated his country’s foreign policy towards Saudi Arabia and its led military operation, Libya and Palestine and justified his die hard support to regional and international efforts against looming threats of security and survival in shape of Daesh and AI-Qaeda-affiliated groups.
Foreign Minister highlighted his country effective role in international efforts to help affected countries to confront these threats. He assured his country strong commitment and support to regional and international efforts aiming at combating and eliminating extremism and terrorism through cooperation and coordination with regional and international partners.
He appreciated the positive role played by world famous Islamic institute AI-Azhar for its longstanding tradition in confronting extremist ideologies. He also reiterated the principled position of the UAE to stand by the Egypt. The foreign minister said, “The recent political and economic achievements of the Government of Egypt are major steps towards its recovery, and positively assist the recovery and stability of the region.”
He mentioned deteriorating security situation and emerging security concerns happening in Yemen and regarded the restoration of full control of Bab AI-Mandab by the coalition forces and the Yemeni people by defeating the rebels, as another military success in securing this vital sea lane. According to him, it further marked the end of the control of the rebels and their supporters, while demonstrating their weakening presence in other strategic areas in Yemen.
Total UAE humanitarian assistance extended to Yemen during the past four months has exceeded two hundred million dollars, he said. He assured continue working with the United Nations to deliver aid to meet the humanitarian emergency needs of the Yemeni people.
He stressed the value of international community’s support and realization to restore the political process in Yemen in accordance with the agreed parameters, most importantly the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) initiative and its implementation mechanism.
Foreign Minister reassured UAE’s continued support for the Arab coalition led by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia against Yemeni rebels and Houthis and its commitment to enhancing the capacity of the Yemeni people to restore stability. He showcased UAE’s massive humanitarian assistance campaigns for the needy people of Yemen.
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed expressed his country’s deep concern regarding the ongoing tension and instability in Libya, which represents a major threat to security and stability in the region. To fight strongly against Daesh and other terrorist organisations and respond to trans-boundary threats, the UAE showed the appropriate measures to the world by lifting the ban imposed on the capabilities of the elected Libyan Government enabling.
He labeled the Syrian and Libyan crises serious producing shocking violence which has taken a heavy human and political toll. Almost daily, He talked about the immense sufferings of innocent people, especially women and children, in their mass exodus as they search for safe havens and safe livelihoods, and the heavy price paid by refugees who have lost their lives in tragic conditions.
The UAE foreign minister said stressed the Security Council to fulfil its principal mandate and reach a consensus on a settlement for the Syrian crisis to ensure a political transition and the formation of a new government, which encompasses all components of the Syrian society. He valued the importance of the international community continuing to deliver humanitarian aid to the Syrian people.
“The UAE affirms its humanitarian commitment to supporting the Syrian people and alleviating their suffering,” H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed said.
He reaffirmed UAE’s humanitarian commitment to supporting the Syrian people and alleviating their suffering. Since the beginning of the conflict, the UAE has received more than 100,000 Syrian nationals, and extended humanitarian and development assistance totalling more than US$ 530 million, he added.
He also mentioned Iraq’s situation an UAE’s support for the efforts of the Iraqi government towards achieving peace and stability and ending sectarian practices, and stress in this context the importance of implementing reforms to ensure inclusiveness, fairness and equality for all segments and components of the Iraqi society.
H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed restated UAE’s total displeasure and rejection of Iran’s continued occupation of the UAE three islands Greater Tunb, Lesser Tunb and Abu Musa. He demanded restoration of the UAE full sovereignty over these islands. He stressed that all actions and measures carried out by the Iranian authorities are contrary to international law and all norms and common values. He renewed UAE’s call to the international community to urge Iran to respond to the sincere and peaceful calls of the UAE to reach a just settlement for this issue, either through serious direct negotiations between our two countries or by referring the issue to the International Court of Justice.
The foreign minister showed his country’s solidarity with struggling Palestine’s people and warned of the feelings of injustice and frustration resulting from the continued Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories and the flagrant human rights violations committed by the occupation forces provide extremist groups with an opportunity to exploit these serious humanitarian conditions and to spread their radical thinking and incite frustrated youth to implement their destructive agenda.
He appreciated the efforts of the Somali Federal Authorities and its Forces in countering AI-Shabaab Movement and its threats, and urged them to continue taking the necessary measures to restore peace and stability, and reiterated his country’s support for such efforts to achieve that objective.