Sheikh Hamdan, Sheikh Maktoum and Sheikh Ahmed Image Credit: WAM/Gulf News Archives

Dubai: Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, congratulated President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan; His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE 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 on the historical accomplishment of the Hope Probe’s entry into the Martian orbit. Sheikh Hamdan said the mission fulfils the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s dream, which he expressed 50 years ago.

“Under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa and the continuous support and follow up of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid and HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, the UAE has created history both on the regional and global stage. The accomplishment is the latest in a series of significant national achievements in the space sector. The Hope Probe’s entry into the Martian orbit makes the UAE one of the leading nations in space exploration and space science. We are the fifth nation in the world to reach Mars. Following this achievement, which is unparalleled in the Arab and Islamic world, we will share the expertise and knowledge we have gained from different phases of this ambitious project with people and institutions in the region and the world. This is in line with our commitment to contributing to the progress of humanity and securing a bright future for the planet’s next generation,” Sheikh Hamdan noted.

His Highness said this remarkable achievement, which was made possible by the blessings of the Almighty and the efforts of citizens to support the nation’s journey of progress and cement its leadership in shaping the future, is aligned with the UAE’s goal of becoming a major player in advanced sectors like space exploration.

“Backed by the vision and support of our leaders, the progress achieved by the UAE is an inspirational success story for the global community. The UAE will continue to invest in its youth and equip them with the tools and knowledge needed to contribute to the nation’s quest for global leadership in various sectors,” His Highness said.

Sheikh Hamdan commended all those who contributed to the success of the National Space Programme and the Hope Probe mission. “We are proud of this historic achievement that is the product of the innovation and excellence of exceptional young Emiratis who worked tirelessly for six years to deliver this massive project on time. Despite the current circumstances, these Emiratis continued to have confidence in their ability to fulfil Zayed’s dream,” His Highness added.

Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, also extended his congratulations to the UAE leadership on the achievement. Sheikh Maktoum said: “This historic achievement, which realises the dream of our nation’s founding father the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, fills us with happiness and pride. Its success is the result of the strategic importance the nation’s leaders place on space exploration and space science. The leadership’s continuous support ensured that the project team was able to overcome the challenges brought in the wake of the pandemic.”

Sheikh Maktoum thanked all those who contributed to the success of the mission, which paves the way for the UAE joining the big league of space nations. This historic achievement is the culmination of the team’s hard work and dedication over the last six years, he said.

NAT 210209 MARS CELEBRATION -2-1612952186084
Emiratis celebrate the success of UAE's Hope Probe on Tuesday. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

“The Hope Probe’s success in entering the Red Planet’s orbit opens a new chapter in our development journey. Fifty years ago, when Sheikh Zayed met Nasa experts, he believed that one day the UAE will contribute to international efforts to explore space. His dream has now come true.”

Apart from bringing significant scientific benefits, the mission will also inspire upcoming generations and boost their confidence. This achievement demonstrates our ability to contribute to shaping the world’s future, he noted.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Media Council also congratulated the UAE leadership on the historical accomplishment of the Hope Probe’s entry into the Martian orbit. Sheikh Ahmed said the achievement marks a new chapter in the history of the UAE and Arab world in space exploration and leadership in advanced technologies.

Sheikh Ahmed also congratulated the UAE people and Arab and Islamic nations on the historic achievement, affirming that the success in entering the Mars orbit is the culmination of hard work and dedication of over 200 Emirati scientists and engineers that continued for six years. Sheikh Ahmed said the project realises the wise leadership’s aspirations and vision of the Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, whose dream was for the UAE to reach outer space.

Sheikh Ahmed expressed his pride at the new historic milestone achieved by the UAE, which marks an important step for the country in building a rich legacy in the fields of advanced science and technology. This opens new doors and presents great opportunities during the fourth industrial revolution, he noted.

“When the Hope Probe was launched last July, it did not only carry the hopes of the UAE people, but also the aspirations of millions of Arabs and Muslims around the world for a better future. The Hope Probe mission represents a new phase for the UAE and inspires us to further fulfil the vision of our wise leadership,” Sheikh Ahmed said.

The Chairman of the Dubai Media Council also praised the role of the national media in supporting the historic mission through their high quality coverage over the past six years. He said the media coverage played a significant role in educating the community on the strategic objectives of the National Space Programme.

Sheikh Ahmed congratulated the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre and all those who contributed to the success of the Hope Probe mission.

Vaccination campaign hailed

Meanwhile, Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai’s Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management praised the community’s positive response to the UAE’s extensive COVID-19 vaccination campaign. The responsibility and awareness shown by the community resulted in high demand for vaccination across the country, he said.

Sheikh Mansoor’s remarks came during a meeting of Dubai’s Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management held to review COVID-19 data and developments. He highlighted the importance of implementing the UAE leadership’s directives to rapidly roll out an extensive vaccination campaign to raise protection levels in the community.

More than 4.5 million doses of vaccines have been administered in the UAE as of Tuesday, 9 February, at a distribution rate of 45.77 doses per 100 people, one of the highest in the world. The UAE’s ability to provide robust healthcare has resulted in the country registering one of the world’s lowest mortality rates of 0.3 per cent, compared to a global mortality rate of 2.14 per cent.