Abu Dhabi: The first batch of students from the Emirates Diplomatic Academy (EDA), the institution produces Emirati diplomats, graduated on Sunday. Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, who graduated the students, named them the “Saif Bin Ghobash Cohort 2016” in the memory of the first UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Saif Saeed Bin Ghobash.
Saif Bin Ghobash, the first UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, was one of the founders of the UAE’s early, outward facing, cooperative foreign policy as a politician and as a diplomat. He has become a symbol of the country’s approach to the world.
Shaikh Abdullah made the announcement at the EDA graduation ceremony that took place at the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. The EDA is the nation’s international relations and diplomacy academic, training, best practice and research institution.
Fifty students received their Post-Graduate Diploma in International Relations, symbolising a major milestone not just for the academy, but for the development and practice of diplomacy and international relations in the UAE. In addition, eighteen students received special recognition for the successful completion of ‘Capstone’ research projects focusing on social, political and economic aspects of the UAE’s foreign relations.
Shaikh Abdullah urged the students to find in Saif Bin Ghobash’s generosity, sacrifice and love of the nation an inspiration and noble example.
EDA graduates come from both government and semi-governmental entities including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Ministry of Presidential Affairs, the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development, the Crown Prince Court in Abu Dhabi, as well as Dubai Media Office and Mubadala.
EDA’s Director General, Bernardino Leon, said that the establishment of the Academy is a tangible reflection of the UAE’s exceptional approach to addressing global challenges and identifying new opportunities for collaboration.
Omar Bin Saif Gobash, the UAE Ambassador to Russia, who is also a member of the EDA Board of Trustees said his family and he were deeply honoured by Shaikh Abdullah’s announcement that the 2016 graduates of the EDA would be known as the Saif Ghobash Class. “We will always be grateful for the consideration given to the memory of our father,” he said.
The ceremony was attended by Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, and Academy Board of Trustees member; Dr Anwar Gargash, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs; Noura Al Kaabi, Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs; Shamma Al Mazroui, UAE Minister of Youth and Board of Trustee member; Dr Sultan Ahmad Al Jaber, UAE Minister of State, and other official dignitaries.