combo pic for British expats reactions to Queen's death
Laura Everest (left column top), Mike Cheetham (left column bottom), Haroon Ali (centre column top), Mitchell Perera (centre column bottom), Justine Welch (right column top), and Anoop Bhargava (right column bottom) Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: UAE residents have paid tributes to Queen Elizabeth II, UK’s longest-serving monarch, who died on Thursday at the age of 96. Many praised her as a rock for her strength and sense of duty towards her people.

British expat Justine Welch in Dubai said: “Queen Elizabeth will be the strongest woman we see in our lifetime... Our long-standing Queen was an example of strength, dignity, pride and grace. She had all of these traits in abundance. She will forever be a historical figure who never let her people down.”

She added: “Despite the social changes that we have seen throughout the generations... She never faltered and earned her respect throughout 70 years...”

Another Dubai-based British expat, Laura Everest, said: “The Queen was inspirational for her sense of duty towards her people and country. She was so loved and globally respected as the Matriarch of the British Nation. I am currently in the UK and we are seeing an outpouring of love, affection and tributes to the remarkable person she was. We feel utterly sad.”

British expat Anoop Bhargava, who works as a finance professional, said: “The longest serving monarch of the world’s oldest democracy who endeared herself to the world by her empathy and affection for people. This is a terrible loss for the UK and the world and Queen Elizabeth will be missed immensely and forever. Post the independence of multiple countries from UK, she oversaw the creation of a unified Commonwealth for mutual good.”

‘Life of sacrifice’

British resident in Dubai, Haroon Ali, said: “It is so difficult for me to express this tribute in honour of Her Majesty. She lived a life of sacrifice by helping others build their own lives. She was a great inspiration to us all. Great people are not just great, they have worked hard to become that great. Today, we honour our late Queen’s dedication to the right standard of life and commitment to the moral value which resulted in a fulfilled life for her many who were influenced with her life.”

Sri Lankan expat Mitchell Perera, a motoring specialist, said: “Queen Elizabeth was an icon of strength, grace and dignity. Apart from being the longest reign she was able to keep peace and harmony across all British colonies, which is one of the most important jobs of a monarch.”

Kim Wells

Another British expat Kim Wells, who is head of hospitality – service excellence at a local hospital, said: “I felt an overwhelming sense of sadness last evening when it was announced our beloved Queen had died. My friends and family were all messaging, posting their shock that the Queen had passed away. Queen Elizabeth has been a constant in our lives for as long as we can remember.”

She added: “The Queen dedicated her entire life to her role and was one of the hardest working Royals the country has ever had. I would have loved to have flown home to be in the UK for the funeral as I know the entire nation unite to mourn her passing. Here, my friends and I will gather on the day of her funeral to mourn her loss but more importantly celebrate the amazing life she led. Her contribution to the Commonwealth will be remembered forever.”

Dr Mike Cheetham, a British expat living in the UAE, who works as global business director for a private company, said: “At 96 our beloved queen lived a total healthy life with faultless devotion to her country by continually working hard. Imagine, until four days before passing from this earth, she was working and fulfilling her duty. That is simply incredible... She was an ultimate leader and diplomat. She will indeed be hard to replace.”

Danny Kaadan

British expat Danny Kaadan said: “Queen Elizabeth led Britain from steam age to the modern world we live in. My condolences to the Royal family and the people of UK on the passing of Queen Elizabeth II. May her soul Rest In Peace.”