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Expats observe Queen’s 91st birthday

British expatriates gather at diplomatic missions to usher in Queen’s birthday

  • The British Embassy in Abu Dhabi and the British Embassy in Dubai held events on the evenings of Tuesday 18th Image Credit:
  • The British Embassy in Abu Dhabi and the British Embassy in Dubai held events on the evenings of Tuesday 18th Image Credit:
Gulf News

Dubai: The British Embassy in Abu Dhabi and the British Embassy in Dubai hosted gala evening receptions to observe the 91th birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

The British Embassy in Abu Dhabi and the British Embassy in Dubai held events on the evenings this week to celebrate.

The events were hosted by Philip Parham, British Ambassador to the UAE, in Abu Dhabi, and by Paul Fox, British Consul General, in Dubai.

On behalf of the UAE Government, the guests of honour were His Excellency Saqr Ghobash Saeed Ghobash, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, in Abu Dhabi; and Her Excellency Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of State for Tolerance in Dubai.

A number of representatives from the northern Emirates’ ruling courts were also present for the event in Dubai.

Both events saw several hundred guests including senior government figures, diplomats, business people and some of the leaders of the 120,000-strong British community in the UAE.

The celebrations started with the playing of the Emirati and British national anthems, which in Abu Dhabi were sung by students from the British School Al Khubairat in Abu Dhabi and by music scholars in Dubai. They were followed by and speeches by Ambassador Parham and Consul General Fox.

Guests at both events were entertained by live music played by the Dubai Pops Orchestra, and enjoyed food from the constituent nations of the United Kingdom.

The Queen’s Birthday Party is the United Kingdom’s annual national celebration. The events also serve as important opportunities to celebrate the relationship between the UK and UAE.

British Ambassador Philip Parham noted: “Her Majesty has now served her peoples and the Commonwealth for over 65 years, during which she has seen thirteen Prime Ministers starting with Churchill, thirteen US Presidents starting with Truman, seven Archbishops of Canterbury and seven Popes. This is an extraordinary and inspiring record of public service. I’m honoured to be able to mark this occasion here in the United Arab Emirates - a country with which the UK has a partnership founded on “deep-rooted and steadfast friendship”, in the words of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan during his 2013 state visit to the UK.”

British Consul General in Dubai Paul Fox said: “Her Majesty remains a fixed point in a changing world. She continues to be our most potent symbol of continuity and a counterpoint to far-reaching changes. She has shown an unsurpassed dutifulness and commitment to Her country and Her people. Her Majesty is the UK’s greatest Ambassador, as demonstrated by Her special friendships with Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Shaikh Mohammad bin Rashid al Maktoum.”

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