ROME: Italian President Sergio Mattarella offered his condolences to the UAE on Friday upon the death of its former president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, remembering him for his “tenacity and farsightedness.”
In a message to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, ruler of Dubai and the acting president of the UAE, Mattarella said he “learned with sadness the news of the passing of His Highness Khalifa Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan,” who, he added, had led his country on “an important path” of growth and development.
“Please accept, Your Highness, the expressions of the most sincere condolences of the Italian Republic and my own personal condolences, which I beg you to extend to the Royal Family and to the whole people the UAE,” Mattarella added.
Mattarella was joined in his condolences by leaders from across Europe and from the EU.
President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen said: “I offer my condolences to the people of the UAE on the passing of Sheikh Khalifa. The sheikh devoted his life to his country, working for the welfare and future of the Emirates.
“With him, the UAE became prosperous, tolerant and open to the world. His legacy will live on,” she added.
European Council President Charles Michel added in a message: “The EU honours Sheikh Khalifa’s legacy and leadership, under which the UAE became a frontrunner of sustainable development and economic diversification.”