Fujairah: Acclaimed Emirati adventurer Saeed Khamis Al Memari is on a special ‘peace mission’ from the UAE. The Fujairah-based mountaineer is climbing the highest peaks of the world to spread the message of tolerance and love from his motherland.
With a passion for mountaineering from an early age, the 44-year-old holds the title of the first Emirati adventurer to climb the highest summits in the world including Mount Everest and he has been featured in the text books in UAE curriculum schools.
In his latest expedition, Al Memari has set a target of five years to climb the highest peaks in 246 countries and geographical territories. He has so far conquered 68 of them with Jebel Shams in Oman being the last one to be conquered last week, he revealed to the media on Monday.
Titled “Peak for Peace”, Al Memari’s mission is to send the message of peace from the UAE to the entire world.
“Many people had started attempting this mission to climb the peaks of every country from the 1950s. But nobody could complete it till now because they needed political support and big capital to do it,” Al Memari told Gulf News.
“Some countries cannot be reached so easily. But, we have that opportunity as the UAE has good relations with more than 200 countries and we have the support from the Rulers and the government. That is why we think this mission is possible and we are doing it,” he explained.
The initiative is supported by Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad Al Sharqi, the Crown Prince of Fujairah.
Peace trophy, book
During this special peace mission, Al Memari will carry a letter of peace and a peace trophy to each country he is visiting and present them to honour one of the top leaders there. He said he has the political and diplomatic support for representing the UAE and meeting the leaders of the countries he is visiting.
“I will also get a message of peace from them…what they mean by peace in their country. All the messages will be included in the ‘Book of Peace’ that I am planning to come out with.”
General details about each country and its highest peak that Al Memari would conquer and the peace message from the leaders would be included in the book.
The United Nations may have membership of only 193 countries. But, for Al Memari, the world to conquer with peace is much beyond that.
“We want the message of peace to reach the entire world…so we are covering everyone,” he said, referring to all the countries and dependent territories, and special areas of geographical interest.
Al Memari has done several climbing expeditions in the past and had supported various causes and inspired change through his achievements. He has raised awareness about the plight of refugees and cancer patients and also supported people with disabilities and Down Syndrome and many others.
But, the message of peace and tolerance lied at the core of every achievement.
“This is what my country is doing. I want to support that message that our Rulers are doing to promote peace in the world. As a mountain climber I am trying to do this. Not everyone can climb a summit. When someone does it, there should be a purpose. Everyone asks why you are doing it. I can proudly say it is to promote peace in the world. Peace is what we need ultimately.”
The challenges ahead are aplenty and climbing each summit is literally an uphill task. However, Al Memari said he was hopeful to overcome all the hurdles because of the strength of the message that aspires to promote.
“There are many challenges. Sometimes you are away for months all alone to climb a mountain. Some countries might have some internal issues. The weather is also important. Also, we need to be in the right season to climb certain summits,” he explained.
After each expedition, Al Memari takes a short break to spend some time with his family in Fujairah.
Support the mission
He urged everyone to support his mission that would add to the glory of the country when it celebrates the golden jubilee of the formation of the union.
“There are many ways to support the mission. People can sponsor the cost of climbing one of the peaks, or facilitate the trip to some of these countries or can even be the participants in the expeditions.”
On Monday, Al Memari was honoured by the management of Hadi Express Exchange which has pledged to support one or two of his expeditions.
“We are proud, happy and privileged to honour him. He is a beacon of peace and we, as a company thriving in the UAE, want to give back to this country by supporting his mission that will promote the UAE’s message of peace and tolerance across the world,” said Albin Thomas, general manager of Hadi Express Exchange.
“We have allocated the budget for sponsoring him and his crew for one or two expeditions which can be finalised depending on the travel situations,” he added.
7 main summits conquered by Saeed Khamis Al Memari
Mount Everest—8,848 metres in 2012
Mount Aconcagua—6,962 metres in 2015
Mount McKinley (Denali)— 6,194 metres in 2013
Mount Kilimanjaro—5,895 metres in 2011
Mount Elbrus—5,642 metres in 2014
Mount Vinson Massif—4,892 metres in 2013
Mount Carstensz —4,884 metres in 2014