His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, opens the session of the FNC in Abu Dhabi Image Credit: Screengrab from WAM video

On behalf of President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, today opened the first ordinary session of the 18th legislative chapter of the Federal National Council (FNC), in the presence of Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Presidential Court.

Attended by Crown Princes, Deputy Rulers, ministers and senior civil and military officials, the inauguration ceremony began with the UAE National Anthem and recitation of verses from the Quran.

Later, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid officially opened the first ordinary session of the FNC’s 18th legislative chapter. Decree No. 165 of 2023 issued by President Sheikh Mohamed to convene the first ordinary term of the 18th legislative chapter was read out at the event.

Emirati Children's Parliament

On the sidelines of the session, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid met with members of the Emirati Children's Parliament (ECP).

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid took a commemorative photo with ECP members, in the presence of Sheikh Mansour, Ghobash, and Reem Abdullah Al Falasi, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood.

The Emirati Children’s Parliament seeks to encourage children's involvement in decision-making processes by fostering dialogue and providing a structured platform for them to express their opinions. Its key goal is to nurture a generation that can actively fulfill its social responsibilities and make meaningful contributions to community development and progress.

It also aims to educate children about their rights and how they can protect themselves in accordance with the National Strategy for Motherhood and Childhood, the Child Protection Law (Wadeema), and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

Speaker's speech

On behalf of Federal National Council members, Saqr Ghobash, Speaker of the FNC, extended his gratitude to President Sheikh Mohamed; Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid; Sheikh Mansour; and Their Highnesses Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates, for their continuous support to the Federal National Council.

In his speech at the event, Ghobash highlighted the firmly established principles set forth by the UAE’s leadership, which have guided the development of a strong nation that enjoys high levels of security and safety, and provides an exceptional quality of life for its people and residents.

Ghobash affirmed the commitment of members of the Federal National Council to make the 18th chapter a seamless continuation of previous chapters in terms of cooperation and integration with the UAE government. Ghobash also reiterated the importance of drawing inspiration from the wisdom and values of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to work diligently for the development of the UAE.

Regarding the current situation in the Middle East, Ghobash affirmed the UAE’s commitment to stand by the Palestinian people and highlighted its call for a humanitarian ceasefire, delivery of humanitarian aid and protection of civilians. He also said the UAE calls on the international community to support the two-state solution as a just, comprehensive and permanent solution to the Palestinian issue in accordance with UN resolutions.

The Speaker of the Federal National Council stressed the Council’s keenness to deepen cooperation with UAE government entities to support efforts to advance the country’s development.