Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence. — Supplied photo
Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence. — Supplied photo

UAE to celebrate human fraternity in new yearly festival on Feb 4

Abu Dhabi - Several virtual events and forums will be held until February 8.


Ismail Sebugwaawo

Published: Tue 26 Jan 2021, 4:50 PM

Last updated: Tue 26 Jan 2021, 5:09 PM

On February 4, the UAE will hold its first Human Fraternity Festival — marking the start of a yearly event to celebrate International Day of Human Fraternity, it was announced on Tuesday.

Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, said the festival would be organised by the ministry in cooperation with the Higher Committee for Human Fraternity. For the inaugural edition, the event will run from February 4 to 8, under the slogan ‘Human Fraternity in Action’.

“The festival is an expression of our pride in the prospects of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and his sponsorship of the human fraternity document launch from Abu Dhabi,” said Sheikh Nahyan.

In December last year, the United Nations officially recognised February 4 as International Day of Human Fraternity, following a proposal from the UAE. This was in appreciation of the historic event that took place in Abu Dhabi on February 4, 2019, when the Human Fraternity Document was signed by Pope Francis, Head of the Roman Catholic Church, and Dr Ahmed Al Tayyeb, Grand Imam of Al Azhar, under the patronage Sheikh Mohamed.

“This document is in essence a message of love and peace from the UAE to the world, calling on all of humanity to know one another, to encourage dialogue, and to work together in order to accomplish prosperity and happiness for all. Moreover, it calls for uniting efforts to combat extremism, divisiveness, intolerance and terrorism at all levels,” said Sheikh Nahyan.

“The festival will be held under the slogan ‘Human Fraternity in Action’, acknowledging that the document extends much further than its meaning in spirit to horizons that call for collective action for the common good.”

Human Fraternity in Action, the minister said, is an expression of “our pride of the UAE and is symbolic of a nation in which people from all over the world live in peace, fraternity and prosperity”.

“The UAE is a country known for its tolerance and its spirit of human fraternity, which promotes and fosters an environment of safety, stability and prosperity for everyone living on this beloved land,” Sheikh Nahyan said.

The five-day virtual festival will involve several activities, including a global forum that will see the participation of international thinkers and experts from the Arab world.

There will also be celebrations in more than 41 government agencies. Another event — the Human Fraternity Week in the Football Pro League — will be launched (Round 15 of the league will be held under the name of Human Fraternity).

The Ministry of Education is marking the occasion by including a human fraternity lesson in the Moral Education-Schools Programme. There will be a reading session for children about the human fraternity document.

Other activities will include: a fraternity little champion programme; Me and You – University Programme; a forum on fraternity in the youth’s eyes; talks on the mechanisms of promoting human fraternity principles in governmental work; human fraternity champions programme; and launch of ‘volunteering, a real embodiment of human fraternity’.

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