Have you put up a UAE flag on your home for National Day? Image Credit: AHMED RAMZAN/Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: Recollections of an era gone by and humorous anecdotes were shared by two prominent former British political agents who were present during the years leading up to the formation of the UAE, and Emiratis who lived through the changing times of the young country.

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They shared their experiences during a three-day seminar titled ‘Memoirs of the Emirates through Oral Narratives'.

"This event is a great reflection on the efforts being placed by President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, to preserve the rich history and culture of the UAE. Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may he rest in peace, was a wise and great leader who understood the importance of keeping history alive," Dr Hadef Jua'an Al Daheri, Minister of Justice, said.

Dr Al Daheri quoted Shaikh Zayed: "He who does not know his past cannot make the best of his present and future, for it is from the past that we learn".

Dr Daheri continued: "I would also like to extend my gratitude to the British speakers participating at this seminar, as the British government has been a great source of support and friendship to the UAE".

The seminar, which began yesterday, was organised by the National Centre for Documentation and Research (NCDR) as part of the upcoming celebrations to mark the 39th anniversary of the UAE's unification.

It is held under the patronage of Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, and Chairman of the NDCR. The Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Hall of the NDCR, which has documents, photographs, video archives, maps and various collections of rifles and medals was inaugurated yesterday.

Sunday's seminar will focus on the role of the Trucial Oman Scouts, health care, early education and vocational training in the UAE.