The UAE and Britain… Close cooperation for a bright future

Nasser Al Jabri (Abu Dhabi)

The United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom are linked by a close friendship that extends for decades, and with historical political relations that have contributed to achieving the common interests of the two countries, and strengthening cooperation, coordination and unified work in many pivotal sectors, based on a common vision of the strategic importance of this relationship, which has witnessed an increasing and accelerating development during the past years. Announcing several agreements that support aspects of bilateral cooperation.
The United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom share their common conviction of the importance of working to provide the appropriate environment for dialogue in various conflicts around the world, and the need for the world to unite to confront extremist ideas and combat terrorism, and to spread the values ​​of moderation, moderation and coexistence among peoples, societies and religions, and the importance of establishing international security and achieving global stability. Through effective cooperation that ensures drying up the sources of extremism and intolerance, and consolidating the values ​​of peace and tolerance.
During the past decades, it was able to form the UAE-British relations, the best example of the extended and continuous international relations that have lasted for decades, due to the presence of mutual trust and absolute conviction of the political leadership in the two countries, in the common interests that unite the two friendly countries, and the importance of harnessing this relationship to contribute positively to playing a role Pivotal to creating a bright future and shaping a better present for the world.
Since the announcement of the establishment of the UAE, the pace of relations between the two friendly countries has accelerated, with the support of the founding father, the late, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may his soul rest in peace, who was keen to build important strategic relations with the United Kingdom, with his long-term vision, wisdom and conviction of the necessity of Joint international action between different countries of the world to reach solutions that contribute to overcoming challenges, and based on the common history that unites the United Kingdom and the UAE.
During the first years after the establishment of the union, Queen Elizabeth II made her first official visit to the UAE, specifically in 1979, when the UAE received the Queen of Britain with official and popular celebrations. Informing the Queen of the major achievements that were accomplished during the less than 8 years of the union’s life.
In 1989, the visit of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may his soul rest in peace, constituted a historic event in the relations between the two countries, and had repercussions on all international issues at that time, as Britain welcomed the founding father, as a statesman. Of the first order, he was able to embody the union of the UAE, and cross it to safety, as he was able to lead his country to international forums with steadfastness and an influential presence, and therefore the United Kingdom gave the visit a special importance, since the founding father is not one of the leaders of traditional countries, given his presence on the The regional and international arenas, and based on the internal developments that the UAE witnessed under his leadership, and the reflection of this role on the international arena towards various issues.

During the past years, relations between the two countries witnessed a qualitative leap, with the support of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the State, may God protect him, and the follow-up of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, may God protect him. His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, has recently witnessed an important leap in political relations, embodied in joint positions and continuous meetings that demonstrated the strength and solidity of this relationship.
The visits and exchanged phone calls during the previous period, between His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Boris Johnson, British Prime Minister, confirm the high level of relations between the two friendly countries, and the political role of these relations in finding solutions to regional and international issues, which have been established by many of identical positions, visions and opinions, and was reinforced by the presence of a real desire to continue the successes and achievements made for the common good.
During December of last year, the two countries affirmed their continued commitment to developing their partnership, strengthening the strategic dialogue between the two countries, increasing cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, research and development and climate change, and strengthening the two countries’ economies, including cooperation across priority areas such as: life sciences, health care and future technologies. Digital innovation, renewable energy, space, infrastructure, education, tourism, food security, financial and professional services, confirming that the political relations between the two countries are moving towards further progress and prosperity.
On the military front, the two countries have close military relations, as in 1996, the UAE and the United Kingdom signed a defense cooperation agreement that defined security cooperation arrangements, and this agreement is Britain’s largest defense commitment outside NATO, and in 2009 the United Kingdom signed a memorandum of understanding with the forces The UAE armed forces allowed British forces to use Emirati air bases.
Military cooperation continued, through the British Royal Military Academy Sandhurst receiving hundreds of Emirati citizens since 1974, who graduated with efficiency and competence, in addition to military exchange in the fields of training and consultancy, with the aim of strengthening the system of joint military action, and benefiting from the diverse military expertise. and modern armament technologies. The past years have witnessed the establishment of a series of joint exercises, which are held between the two countries, within the framework of joint military cooperation, with the aim of training in planning, implementing and managing joint military operations, activating unified procedures between the various participating arms, in addition to unifying joint work and the optimal training method to raise combat efficiency. of the armed forces, and the refinement of capabilities and combat capabilities. Within the framework of economic cooperation, a joint Emirati-British Business Council has been formed. This year, the Council focuses on harnessing new partnerships in the field of innovation, future technology, applications of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, education, culture, skills, health care, energy, sustainable growth, industry and infrastructure, and is conducting a series of campaigns on Priority areas such as food security and space, contributing to the promotion of trade exchange and the development of joint economic projects.

In the field of healthcare, the partnership between Mubadala Healthcare and Imperial College London in the United Kingdom, under which the center was built in Abu Dhabi, is one of the most important partnerships targeting healthcare, as the center works to meet the increasing demand associated with diabetes care services in the country. Providing the finest international medical services, enhancing research, treatment and public health, starting from the initial diagnosis stage to providing care and treatment for all complications related to diabetes. In the educational aspect, the academic links between the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates are very deep and solid, as there are many British schools in the country, and prestigious British universities receive UAE students from various disciplines, as the past decades have witnessed the graduation of many UAE students who have engaged in Various development sectors, taking advantage of the prestigious academic role in the most important universities in the United Kingdom, in addition to the existence of academic cooperation between state universities and British universities to strengthen the scientific research system.

In the cultural aspect
In the cultural aspect, the UAE, in cooperation with the British Booker Prize Foundation, launched the International Prize for Arabic Fiction in 2007. The prize, dedicated to fiction literature, aims to honor outstanding contemporary Arab creative writing, and to encourage readers in the region and abroad to read good Arabic literature, and to encourage translation and dissemination of Arabic literature into other major languages. As a culmination of the historical relations between the two countries, the Emirati-British Friendship Society was launched, with the aim of strengthening relations between the two countries. The coming period will witness the strengthening of close cooperation between the UAE and the United Kingdom, as efforts include promoting the values ​​of peace and tolerance, advocating human brotherhood, and actively participating in international forums and conferences to emphasize humanitarian concepts and principles, and continue efforts to confront the repercussions of the “Covid-19” pandemic and contribute to accelerating The global recovery process, and discussing partnerships and agreements that have a positive impact in vital sectors.

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