Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation holds virtual evening to mark International Day for Tolerance

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, MoFAIC, in cooperation with the Ministry of Tolerance and Coexistence, held a virtual soirée on Monday, to mark the International Day for Tolerance celebrated by the UAE on the sidelines of the 4th National Festival for Tolerance and Coexistence.

The virtual evening was entitled, “The UAE: Beacon of Tolerance and Coexistence in the World” and was organised by the Ministry of Tolerance and Coexistence under the slogan “In the Footsteps of Zayed.”

Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, and Zaki Nusseibeh, Minister of State and Supreme President of the UAE University, participated in the evening, which was broadcast on MoFAIC’s social media, with the participation of Mohammed Al Shamsi, UAE ambassador to Peru.

The session tackled a number of themes, including the concept and indicators of tolerance in the UAE, the pillars of Emirati tolerance, areas of work in the Ministry of Tolerance and Coexistence and its international dimension, the future of human values in the post-COVID world and the future of tolerance.

Speaking on the occasion, Sheikh Nahyan said, “Tolerance and coexistence have a genuine place in the UAE thanks to the wise and loyal country’s leaders, our eternal Arab and Islamic heritage, and the tolerant and peaceful people of the UAE. The people, join with our leaders in ensuring all institutions of society work together to combat intolerance and extremism, and to preserve the values and humanitarian principles that characterise the successful journey of the UAE in all areas.”

Sheikh Nahyan continued, “This year has witnessed, since our last meeting, important developments in the journey of human societies, calling us all to look forward to the future, and prepare ourselves for its requirements with all seriousness and concern. The world’s experience with the emerging coronavirus, for example, has clearly shown that there are many challenges that neither discriminate between people nor recognise the geographical or political borders of countries. Such challenges highlight the importance of tolerance and coexistence in dealing with such issues now and in the future.

“Among these challenges are the following: First: The challenges of a world witnessing an information revolution affecting decision-making systems leading to the emergence of economic alliances and trade wars which will affect the whole world.

Second: The challenges of a world in which racist, sectarian and populist calls are loud and lead to blaming others for problems, and building of walls between states and peoples, which may be physical, psychological, cultural, civilisation al and economic.

Third: The challenges of a world in which everyone competes, and that competition (either fair or unfair) leads to the greater welfare of some countries, to the detriment of others. As a result, new political and economic alliances may arise, existing alliances and blocs may be weakened, and different patterns of international relations may emerge.

Fourth: The challenges of modern technologies, including the challenges of artificial intelligence, the challenges of the fifth-generation cellular networks, and the tools used to achieve economic and political power and influence in the world.

Fifth: The challenges of a world in which conflicts and disagreements are proliferating, whether between states or between groups and sects. This results in the movement of migrants and refugees in the world, and requires the constant search for peaceful solutions that preserve the interests of everyone.

Sixth: The challenges of diversity and pluralism of the population, and the consequent need to develop the capacity of human societies to accommodate everyone, while simultaneously developing their capacity to preserve heritage and affirm pride in national identity.

Seventh: The challenges of health care, in particular, providing acceptable levels of health services for the entire population, in addition to confronting epidemics and pandemics.

Eighth: The challenges of addressing environmental and climate challenges, while building the capacity to preserve the rights of future generations in a clean and sustainable environment.

Ninth: The challenges of a world in which the population’s expectations are increasing in terms of higher living standards, and a decent life, characterised by good education, and a fulfilling career and personal life, and the resulting pressures on governments and other institutions of society to make this possible.”

For his part, Nusseibeh said, “Tolerance has a great value that brings people together, it brings people closer and fills them with goodness, so they cooperate and get to know one another. Tolerance instills love in the souls and high morals called for by all religions, prophets and messengers. The in turn reflects on communities, leading to solidarity and cohesion, avoiding what spoils societies in terms of disputes and conflicts. There is no doubt that respect for cultures and beliefs achieves justice and equality. ”

Nusseibeh added, “We in the UAE are inspired by our glorious Sharia, the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and by Emirati morals which champion tolerance, peaceful coexistence, and respect for others of all religions, races and cultures. As per the National Tolerance Program and to enrich scientific and cultural content of various programs and activities, we have rolled out several initiatives through which we demonstrate the country’s approach to tolerance and the importance of dialogue, understanding and coexistence inside and outside the country, so that tolerance and moderation become a culture and a method in our society.”

The UAE Ambassador to the Republic of Peru said, “Tolerance has always been one of the deeply-rooted values in the authentic Emirati society, which it derives from the moderation of the true Islamic religion, from noble Arab customs and traditions, and from the wisdom and legacy of Zayed. The UAE boasts a leadership and people characterised by a tolerance, harmony, respect and acceptance of others. It is home to over 200 nationalities enjoying a decent life and respect, and its judiciary ensures justice, respect and equality for all, and criminalises hatred and racism, and causes of discord and disagreement.

“From Abu Dhabi, at the end of the historic meeting that brought together His Holiness Pope Francis, Head of the Catholic Church, and his Eminence, Dr. Ahmed el-Tayeb, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, rose a comprehensive solution for ending many of the crises gripping the world. Amidst the biggest health crisis the world is witnessing with the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic, COVID-19, and as the end of the year 2020 comes near, we are looking forward to creating a better future for all, in a country that has chosen the path of peace.”

The virtual soirée ended with a live broadcast of the Tolerance Choir, presented by more than 250 school students from 170 nationalities residing in the UAE, carrying a message of love, acceptance, coexistence and hope for the future.


Source: UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs