Emirati martyrs' legacy is remembered by their families
Abu Dhabi/Sharjah/Ras Al Khaimah - Despite the sad news for the families, they are feeling proud and honoured after receiving full support from the UAE's leaders and its people.
Honoured, dignified, and proud - this is how the families of the five Emirati diplomats martyred in the Kandahar terrorist attack on Tuesday feel, particularly after receiving full support from the UAE's prudent leadership and its people.
The list of honour included Mohammed Ali Mohammed Zainal Al Bastaki, Ahmed Rashid Salem Ali Al Mazrouie, Abdullah Mohammed Eissa Al Kaabi, Ahmed Abdurrahman Ahmed Al Tunaiji, and Abdul Hamid Sultan Abdullah Ibrahim Al Hammadi.
'He dedicated his entire life to charity activities'
Ahmed Ali Zainal, brother of Mohammed Ali Mohammed Zainal Al Bastaki, said his brother was so committed to his work. "He was also dedicated to charity activities and to which he dedicated his entire life for and died while serving humanity."
The martyr's life was a shiny story of giving whether in Kalba, his hometown, or in Abu Dhabi where he used to work, he added. "The martyr, a father of four children, studied urban planning in the United States and he held several positions and ended up at the Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Foundation in 2007."
Later, he moved to the ministry of presidential affairs in 2013, and worked at the UAE embassy in Kabul.
Mohammed was like a father to the entire family, Ahmed pointed out. "His four children, Abdullah, 32, Suhaib, 29, Fatima, 12 and Ali, 9, were shocked of the news, but feel proud of their father's martyrdom."
He said the martyr used to travel to Afghanistan to help. "He was so passionate about his charity work and he honourably ended his life after opening an orphanage there in Afghanistan."
'We are proud he ended his life serving humanity'
Family members Abdullah Mohammed Eissa Al Kaabi, were sad about losing their beloved. "However, we are so proud that he ended his life while giving for charity and serving humanity as he used to do in his entire life," said one of the family members.
Though shocked, Al Kaabi's father surrendered to the will of Almighty Allah, and said: 'To Allah we belong, and to Him is our return', adding "I am so proud of my dear son who was martyred while serving his country, and helping the poor."
Al Kaabi, who was a senior reporter at the ministry of presidential affairs, and third secretary at the UAE embassy in Kabul, was a hard-working man, according to his uncle Lt-Col Mohammed Al Kaabi. "He was widely known for his good manners, clean hands, and dedication to philanthropic work.
Al Kaabi had three boys and three girls whom he used to train how to love the country and be kind to the poor. "The martyr has been involved in humanitarian programmes in Afghanistan over the last two years."
'Those were the hardest moments in my entire life'
Hassan Al Hammadi, brother Abdul Hamid Sultan Abdullah Ibrahim Al Hammadi, said his brother was dedicated to philanthropic work and that he joined the UAE mission in Afghanistan three years ago after retiring from the armed forces.
Dr Amal Al Hammadi, wife of the martyr who was a retired colonel of the UAE armed forces, and an adviser at the UAE embassy in Kabul, congratulated her kids on the martyrdom of their father.
"Congratulations my kids on having the honour of father's martyrdom while on a mission for charity," she said. Fouad Al Hammadi, brother of the martyr, said he was first alerted about the tragic blast when he was dinning with his family outdoors. "I immediately tried to give him a call, but he never replied."
"These were the hardest moments in my entire life," he added. "I could not imagine that such a philanthropic, kind-hearted, and generous man can ever die this heinous way," he said in the midst of tears.
The news was also shocking to Al Hammadi's 20-year-old son Abdullah and 18-year-old son, Sultan.
'We are ready to continue supporting to the country'
Saeed Khalfan Al Mazroui, cousin of Ahmed Rashid Salem Ali Al Mazrouie, said the martyr used to work in the armed forces before heading the administrative unit at the supportive services sector at the ministry of presidential affairs, and later working as an adviser at the UAE embassy in Kabul.
"The martyr, who has an MBA degree, has five sons and two daughters. The eldest is 18 years old and is studying at the police college in Abu Dhabi, whereas his 13-year-old son Mansur accompanied him to Germany before for a surgery in his right eye."
Father of the martyr 75-year-old Rashid Salem Al Mazrouie said his son was so compassionate and kind to his parents.
Mohammed, son of the martyr, said they are more than ready to continue the shiny example of their father in support to the country and prudent leadership. "The martyrdom of my father is an honour to the entire family, and the priceless blood of my father is a big support to our beloved country in the face of black terrorism."
'I have never met an ethical man like him'
Seventeen-year-old Rashid Al Tunaiji, brother of the UAE martyr Ahmed Abdurrahman Ahmed Al Tunaiji, said his brother never missed the Fajr or Dawn Prayer in the mosque on time and every day. "I have never met an ethical man like him." Mohammed Al Tunaiji, brother of the martyr, said he used to live with his brother in Abu Dhabi. "The UAE embassy in Afghanistan was the first to tell us about his martyrdom."
Pledging to observe his brother's will, he said the martyr has advised him to continue the 'ongoing charity' project which he started. "That was a mosque being built next to his farm at the Bahya area."
Khawlah Al Tunaiji, sister of the martyr, said in tears, that her dear brother travelled to Saudi Arabia for Umrah along with his mother, children, and some of their siblings two weeks back.
Ahmed Abdurrahman, cousin of the martyr, said the martyr, manager of animal control department at the Abu Dhabi food control, and an adviser at UAE embassy in Kabul, was known for his good manners. "He was a real angel or saint; he was a school in giving. I have never seen him but extending hands to the needy."