'Covid-19 pandemic has changed everything', Sheikh Khalifa tells FNC session
President praised the UAE's 'exemplary' performance in facing the pandemic.
Addressing members of the Federal National Council, FNC, as he opened the second ordinary session of the 17th Legislative Chapter of the FNC on Thursday, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan acknowledged this year's unique circumstances in light of the coronavirus pandemic saying, "You resume your work today in a time full of challenges and regional and international changes."
President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa also praised the UAE's "exemplary" performance in facing the pandemic and its progressive handling of the plight.
Sheikh Khalifa said that the pandemic has changed "everything" in the daily routine of people and nations, as well as the priorities of governments all around the world.
Following is the speech in full:
"My brothers and sisters, FNC members, Today, you will resume the work of your council in a phase full of challenges and regional and international changes.
Since last February, we, along with the rest of the world, have been dealing with the challenges and implications posed by the coronavirus pandemic. The pandemic has changed everything in the daily routine of people and nations, as well as the priorities of governments worldwide, bringing the world's economy to a near standstill.
In this regard, the UAE's performance in the face of this plight has been exemplary in terms of its level of progress and magnitude. This performance was enhanced and boosted by our will to continue to give. The country has provided medical and relief aid to more than 100 countries worldwide. It was also strengthened when the country moved forward with its peaceful nuclear programme by operating the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant, and also with the it's space programme with the launch of 'Hope Probe' to Mars.
Brothers and sisters, You know that the strategic importance of our region has made its security and stability synonymous with the rest of the world. We have to always adapt our policy to support the foundations of security and stability of our country and region, based on the adherence to the principles of international law, peaceful coexistence and resolving differences through dialogue. In this context, the Abrahamic Peace Accord came as a tributary of peace that supports the aspirations of the peoples of the region to achieve prosperity and progress.
Yes, our performance in facing the pandemic was exemplary and praised by the World Health Organisation, and gained the respect for the countries of the world. However, we must understand that the pandemic has not ended yet and we must continue our work to combat it. I urge all citizens and residents to renew their commitment to preventive measures, and to follow the recommendations of the relevant authorities.
The pandemic has opened up the potential for new developments and opportunities, and we have, accordingly, restructured the government to further enable it to keep pace with the changes, to hasten its decision-making, and to seize more opportunities."
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