Dubai Ruler Sheikh Mohammed launches ‘Hope Maker’ award

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid has announced the return of the Arab Hope Makers award. (Reuters)
Updated 25 February 2018
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Dubai Ruler Sheikh Mohammed launches ‘Hope Maker’ award

CAIRO: Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced on his Twitter account the return of the Arab Hope Makers award.
The initiative, launched for the second year in a row, entitles participants from the Arab world to win the position of a “Hope Maker,” a job post with a salary of $272,000, or one million dirhams.
The award is dedicated to honoring people who spread hope and encompass the values of giving and optimism, by dedicating their lives to helping others. It is meant to help the winner continue their efforts.
Sheikh Mohammed announced on Saturday the second round of the award, by tweeting: “The Arab Hope Makers are also the makers of our civilization and our future. Every person has the spirit of giving inside them, and the ability to contribute positively to our society; this is our Arab world’s civilizational mission.”
“There are thousands of people who work silently and tirelessly to help others — these are the true heroes who deserve to be honored. We will take these people’s extraordinary stories, and continue to fight despair and pessimism with their spirit of positive change.”
Those with humanitarian, volunteer experience or work on community-based projects, anywhere in the Arab world, are eligible to apply to become the next Arab Hope Maker. Their age doesn’t matter, applicants must perfect the language of giving, both spoken and written.
Nawal Al Soufi from Morocco was named the Arab ‘Hope Maker’ in last year’s edition, for saving the lives of 200,000 refugees.


Iran’s Hassan Rouhani may skip UN meet over US visa delay

Updated 38 min 39 sec ago

Iran’s Hassan Rouhani may skip UN meet over US visa delay

TEHRAN: Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani and his delegation could be forced into skipping next week’s UN General Assembly because the United States has yet to issue them visas, state media said Wednesday.
Rouhani and his delegation had been scheduled to travel to New York for the annual UN gathering on Monday, but that was now looking unlikely given the lack of visas, state news agency IRNA said.
“If the visas aren’t issued in a few hours, this trip will probably be canceled,” IRNA reported.
The delegation includes Iran’s top diplomat Mohammad Javad Zarif, who the United States imposed sanctions against on July 31.
The foreign minister had been due to travel to New York on Friday morning, according to IRNA.
The absence of Rouhani would ruin France’s bid to arrange a meeting between him and US President Donald Trump as part of European efforts to de-escalate tensions between the arch-foes.
“Iran’s absence will show that in contrast with its commitments to the United Nations and international organizations within the framework of agreements, diplomacy has no value for the United States,” IRNA said.
“Although the Islamic Republic of Iran has not left the scene and it continues its active diplomacy, the US government must answer for its behavior,” it added.
The UN General Assembly debate is due to begin on Tuesday.
As the host government, the United States generally is obliged to issue visas to diplomats who serve at UN headquarters.
But Iran and the United States have been at loggerheads since May last year when Trump abandoned a 2015 nuclear deal and began reimposing sanctions in its campaign of “maximum pressure.”
Iran responded by scaling back its commitments under the landmark accord, which gave it the promise of sanctions relief in return for limiting the scope of its nuclear program.