Coronavirus patients
One of the newly recovered coronavirus patients, centre, with Consul-General of China to the UAE, Li Xuhang and Dr. Fatima Al Attar, Head of International Health Regulations at the Ministry. Image Credit: WAM

Dubai: In a world engulfed with the COVID-19 crisis, there are some who are taking time to put all the panic away, instead focus their thoughts to express love and gratitude to a country that has sprung to action to keep them safe.

In a string of heart-warming messages on social media, the UAE expat community has come together to express their love and gratitude to UAE, that took all measures to ensure its citizens and expat community stay safe in the country.

In a tweet on Thursday, March 19, Hend Al Otaiba, Director of Strategic Communications, Ministry of Foreign Affairs said her day was made after her twitter handle @hend_mana was inundated with messages from expats in UAE who thanked the government for the support rendered to them to ensure every resident of the country remains safe.

"This made my day. Beautiful messages from the expat community in the UAE, full of love for the country, and feeling of safety here, as we battle Covid-19. The UAE's top priority is the wellbeing of its citizens and residents, and I am pleased to see that this is felt by the community," the tweet read.

Take a look at some of the love expats in UAE have been showing.

Measures taken by the UAE government so far

On Tuesday, March 17, the Ministry of Health and Prevention announced a record 127,000 individuals had been tested for coronavirus in UAE. Since the pandemic situation touched UAE, the government on its part has ramped up coronavirus testing to curb its spread, following the pandemic's spread.

On March 15, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, met His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces at Al Marmoom Heritage Village. In a tweet in Arabic, Sheikh Mohammed said: "With my brother, Mohammed Bin Zayed, sending a message to our people that their health is the most important matter to us and the country's resources are all utilised to ensure their safety... Everyone is responsible... the UAE is united in the face of challenges, united to overcome crisis, united to safeguard achievements. May Allah bless our people and Emirati society, and sustain health, safety and wellness."

On March 14, the UAE Central Bank announced that it is pumping in Dh100 billion as stimulus package to offset the slowdown in the economy sett off by the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent drop in business activity.

Along with providing financial stimulus, the UAE government has taken a number of stringent measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the UAE.

A series of preventive measures by the UAE government - which sprung to immediate action to curtail the spread of the coronavirus - have come into place the last month.

  • Prayers at mosques and other places of worship in the UAE were suspended
  • On March 16, Dubai issued a special advisory to food outlets by Health and Safety Department of Dubai Municipality. As part of this, customers with flu symptoms will not be allowed entry into food outlets. At least two metre distance between tables to be maintained. Tables must be cleaned and disinfected after customers leave. Customers should not be allowed in waiting areas. Read full story on Gulf News website.
  • The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs called upon its citizens abroad to return to the country.
  • No parties or weddings at homes in Dubai.
  • Pharmacies to deliver at home in Abu Dhabi.
  • Senior citizens to stay at home and avoid crowded places.
  • Maintain social distance, avoid kissing, hugging and handshakes.
  • An early move was to close down schools, universities and nurseries, introduce distance learning programme.
  • Public parks, entertainment and cultural destinations closed down temporarily.
  • Cinemas, pubs and clubs closed
  • Curb on visa issuance to UAE. And UAE halts entry of residency visa holders abroad.

Prayers at mosques and other places of worship in the UAE were suspended