Pope Francis blesses baby in AD
Pope Francis blesses baby at mass Image Credit: Gulf News

What you need to know:

  • Social media users discussed #PopeFrancis’ visit to the UAE and the construction of the Abrahamic Family House in Abu Dhabi.

Social media users discussed #PopeFrancis’ visit to the UAE and the construction of the Abrahamic Family House in Abu Dhabi. The #ChineseNewYear and the new Indian budget were also topics of discussion.

1. Pope Francis visits the UAE

Pope Francis made a historic visit to the UAE this week, and received a warm welcome from the UAE Rulers and residents of the country. He conducted a mass at the Shaikh Zayed Sports City stadium in Abu Dhabi, which was attended by around 180,000 people. The Pope’s visit is part of the Year of Tolerance in the UAE.



Today, a shockwave hit the world, [that] of goodness, of love, of humanity. Today, we reminded the world of Islam’s true identity: tolerance and respect. Today, the UAE was loud and clear: we are the custodians of peace & the core that brings the world together. #PopeFrancisInUAE

Pope Francis arrives in UAE
Pope Francis was welcomed by the Rulers of the land Image Credit: Gulf News

2. Abrahamic Family House in Abu Dhabi

To commemorate the historic visit by Pope Francis and Dr Ahmad Al Tayeb, Grand Imam of Al Azhar, the Abu Dhabi Declaration was signed. A plot of land was also allocated for the construction of the Abrahamic Family House on Saadiyat Island.



My heartfelt congratulations to the great nation of the UAE for the historic ‘Abu Dhabi Declaration’ for Human Fraternity. May the UAE always continue moving onwards and upwards!


3. Chinese New Year

Across the globe, people celebrated the Chinese New Year with great pomp and show. The Burj Khalifa in Dubai also lit up in red to mark the occasion and events took place around the city to mark the day.



Chinese New Year celebrations in Dubai Mall…


4. India’s budget 2019

Indian finance minister Piyush Goyal presented an election friendly budget, promising to help farmers, as well as increasing the tax bracket for middle class to Rs500,000 (Dh25,863). Readers debated the pros and cons of the proposal.



Five years, and this government couldn’t tweak the tax slabs or raise any deductions on income tax. Our salary increases in single digit, actual inflation increased in double digits and tax remained constant. It’s time this government should go! #UnionBudget2019

Finance minister of India PG
Indian Finance Minister Piyush Goyal (C) leaves the Finance ministry to table the budget in Parliament in New Delhi on February 1, 2019 Image Credit: AFP

5. UAE rain

It rained in some parts of the UAE this week, resulting in lower temperatures and cooler evenings. Excited users shared pictures of the change in weather.



[It’s] raining in Dubai #Dubai #DubaiRain