Marking the 44th UAE Armed Forces' Unification Day, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has noted the efforts carried out by the UAE Armed Forces, civil defence teams and medical professionals in curbing the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking to Nation Shield', the UAE military journal, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed said that the COVID-19 pandemic, despite its high cost and losses, has proven to be a successful test for the UAE's institutional structures.
"It has revealed the levels of quality and efficiency of our healthcare systems, which have demonstrated our readiness to address emergencies and crises," His Highness asserted.
The full text of the President's statement follows:
My sons and daughters, leaders, officers, non-commissioned officers and our valiant Armed Forces,
Peace, mercy and blessings of Allah,
On the 44th anniversary of the unification of our Armed Forces, we extend our congratulations to you for carrying out your duties to defend and protect the homeland.
We also extend our greetings to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Their Highnesses, Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates. Their Highnesses continue to oversee the modernisation and development of our Armed Forces' military capabilities.
We pray to Allah the Almighty to shower His mercy on the souls of our Union's Founding Fathers, the leaders behind the unification of our Armed Forces, and to the nation's martyrs.
Also, we extend a greeting filled with pride and applaud to our heroic sons who returned from Yemen. You have stuck true to your word in guarding this nation's pride, safety and dignity, while also committing to the success of the Arab Coalition's core missions.
To the sons and daughters of the nation, its protectors:
I, along with my brothers, Their Highnesses, Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates, value the efforts and active participation of our brave Armed Forces, police and civil defence forces, and security services' efforts to ensure the implementation of precautionary and preventative measures enacted by the country to contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
We have attained great strides in ensuring that our citizens and residents, and visitors to our nation, are provided with the necessary care and protection. In this respect, we are greatly appreciative of our medical and health care services teams as well as teams across the educational sector. They have shown dedication and decisive action towards addressing COVID-19 and protecting the UAE community.
This pandemic, despite its high cost and losses, has proven to be a successful test for our nation's institutional structures. It has revealed the levels of quality and efficiency of our healthcare systems, which have demonstrated our readiness to address emergencies and crises. It has also enabled us to highlight our nation's ability to function unabated across multiple sectors, particularly our education and business sectors, which have continued to carry out production and services via remote and distance-learning mechanisms.
To our officers and soldiers:
The unification of our seven Emirates' defence forces, under one flag and one leadership, was one of the most difficult challenges facing our fathers as they founded the Union. However, with strong will and sound planning, they succeeded in overcoming that challenge, building a resilient and robust army that we are proud of and feel safe because of its presence.
On this day, we express our appreciation and gratitude to the first pioneers, who contributed to laying the building blocks of our Armed Forces. We continue to follow their legacy with determination, and as a core objective of our government, to further bolster our Armed Forces' capabilities.
To our officers and soldiers, the UAE's sons and daughters:
We are proud of you and assured by your readiness and continued support of the nation. As we remember this great day, we acknowledge the challenging circumstances in which our global community is currently enduring.
During this challenging period, we extend our prayers and condolences to the families of all those that have lost their battle with COVID-19. We pray for a quick and full recovery for all those fighting the pandemic.
Lastly, we reiterate our appreciation to our sons and daughters, working tirelessly to ensure the safety and health of all.
May Allah the Almighty bless us all. May He guide us to the righteous path and bless us with His care and protection.