Global action key to achieving sustainable future: UAE Minister Nahyan bin Mubarak

Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al-Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance. (File/AFP)
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Updated 14 January 2020

Global action key to achieving sustainable future: UAE Minister Nahyan bin Mubarak

  • Sheikh Nayhan says UAE’s vision is closely aligned with global quest to achieve UN SDGs by 2030
  • Rwanda’s president outlines initiatives taken by his country to develop sustainable practices

DUBAI: Overcoming the challenges of environmental sustainability requires a global approach based on “international dialogue and cooperation,” said Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al-Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance in the opening remarks of the second day of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW.)

He stressed that sustainability must become less of a “fashionable word” or a “noble concept,” and more of a global goal based on strategy.   

“It must become the dominant motive for national and global actions in order to balance the economic, social, environmental, and cultural needs of all communities,” he said on Tuesday.

Taking place at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre from Jan.11 to 18, the ADSW is hosting a fusion of policy makers, technology pioneers and industry specialists under the theme “Accelerating the pace of sustainable development.”

Al-Nahyan pointed to the UAE’s vision as one that is closely aligned with the global quest to reach the UN Sustainable Development Goals by the year 2030.

“We share with all nations of the world the conviction that reaching those goals will require the efforts of all local and global leaders—leaders from faiths, governments, businesses, communities, and the media,” he said, highlighting the importance of promoting a culture of social responsibility.

He referred to the words and principles of the Human Fraternity Document signed by the Pope and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar last February in Abu Dhabi, as a guide for people’s daily actions.

“Today, in light of the disturbing events we observe daily around the globe, it has become supremely urgent that we not only understand but actively promote the bonds that unite us,” said Al-Nayhan.

Following his speech at the conference, Paul Kagame, the President of Rwanda discussed initiatives introduced in his country to develop sustainable practices.

The starting point is to focus on people by “mobilizing” them to take action and make a difference, he said.

Kagame said Rwanda was one of more than 40 countries worldwide that have banned, restricted or taxed the use of plastic bags.

He said the last Saturday of every month was known as a “clean-up day,” where members of each community across the country took part in cleaning the city.

“What we have learnt ourselves is that it’s not enough to talk about good policies when you’re not actually doing what needs to be done to see results,” he said.

By demonstrating the benefits of environmental practices to the public, Kagame believes in the emergence of a culture based on sustainability, one that involves the youth of the country.

Additionally, parliamentary sessions debating sustainability challenges in Rwanda now include discussions based on goals set by the public, keeping inclusion at the heart of the conversation.

“We started from scratch 25 years ago, and we have created something over 25 years,” said Kagame, referring to the Rwandan genocide in 1994.

“It happened because we are able to look at each other in the eye and say - it’s not all lost, we can work together to create something,” he added, noting that Rwanda has had great success in creating secondary cities, with 78 currently being developed in different parts of the country.

“There is an expectation by everybody form everybody - and that’s why we have to come together,” Kagame said.


Yemeni president in US for annual medical checkup

Updated 13 August 2020

Yemeni president in US for annual medical checkup

AL-MUKALLA: Yemen’s President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi touched down in the US for his annual medical checkup on Thursday, the Yemeni Embassy in the US said.
Ambassador Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak received Hadi at the airport in Cleveland, Ohio, where the appointment is due to take place, and “reaffirmed his utmost best wishes to the president for continued good health,” the embassy said in a brief statement.
Hadi left for the US after appointing a new governor and a new security chief in Aden, and mandating new Prime Minister Maeen Abdul Malik Saeed to form a new government. Hadi has travelled regularly to Cleveland for medical treatment since becoming president in early 2012, reportedly suffering from heart problems.
Saeed asked the governor, Ahmed Hamid Lamlis, to focus his efforts on reviving public institutions in Aden, restoring peace and security and fixing basic services that have been hit hard by years of instability. The official Saba news agency reported that the prime minister pledged Lamlis his government’s full support.
Saeed also entered discussions with various political factions in Yemen with a view to forming his government. Abdul Malik Al-Mekhlafi, an adviser to President Hadi, said on Twitter that the administration would be announced within a month, as the internationally recognized government and the Southern Transitional Council (STC) enacted security and military components of the Riyadh Agreement.
The STC recently rescinded a controversial declaration of self-rule under a new Saudi-brokered proposal to accelerate the implementation of the Riyadh Agreement.
Signed by both sides in late 2019, the agreement was designed to end hostilities in Aden and other southern provinces. Under the deal, the government and the STC were agreed to withdraw their forces from contested areas in southern Yemen, move heavy weapons and military units from Aden and allow the new government to resume duties.
Meanwhile, a judiciary committee assigned by the country’s attorney general to investigate reports of thousands of tons of ammonium nitrate stored at Aden’s port found hat the material was in fact a different fertilizer, urea, which could also prove hazardous if mixed with other materials.
In a letter addressed to the Yemen Gulf of Aden Ports Corporation, Judge Anes Nasser Ali, a local prosecutor, ordered the port’s authorities to remove the urea from the city.
Shortly after the tragic explosion in the Lebanese capital Beirut last Tuesday, Fatehi Ben Lazerq, editor of the Aden Al-Ghad newspaper, ignited public uproar after suggesting 4,900 tons of ammonium nitrate stored in 130 containers had been gathering dust at the port for the last three years, which could cause an equally destructive explosion. The story prompted the country’s chief prosecutor, politicians and the public to call for an investigation.