UAE Emerges as a world leader in global humanitarian efforts to contain coronavirus
By Abdul Bari Masoud
New Delhi/ ABU DHABI: Since the Covid-19 declared as pandemic, the oil-rich Gulf state, United Arab Emirates has emerged as a leader in global humanitarian efforts to stem the virus and providing assistance to 70 countries including China, Italy, UK, Iran, Pakistan, Brazil, Russia and others. The UAE government on Monday also advanced its commitment to strengthening international cooperation after assisting more than 1 million medical workers worldwide through the supply of over 1,000 tonnes of personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical and food aid in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Commenting on the announcement, Ms Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation, said , “Since its very founding, the UAE has pursued bonds of friendly cooperation and solidarity with other countries, believing that nations must set aside their differences in favor of unity and the greater good of humankind. Today’s milestone of assisting 1 million healthcare workers affirms the UAE’s commitment to extending a hand of cooperation to the world, regardless of the religion, race, or ideology of recipients.”
The minister underlined that the clear vision of UAE President, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum; and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, was not clouded when the Covid-19 pandemic hit the world.
“If anything, they doubled down on helping all those in need with what we can as we also manage our own challenges. With these values, respect for our common humanity, and desire to help those in need, the UAE further reasserts the vision of His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founding Father of the UAE, who believed in the collective responsibility of helping his fellow man,” she added.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the UAE has been a leader in global humanitarian efforts to stem the virus’ spread. As the most active provider of foreign COVID-19 assistance in the world, the UAE has ensured that the geographical breadth of its aid knows no filters of race or religion, providing assistance in times of need to 70 countries, including China, Italy, the United Kingdom, Iran, Pakistan, Brazil, Russia, Yemen, and Afghanistan, among others.
In addition to that, the UAE has partnered with numerous international organizations to boost the effectiveness and reach of its COVID-19 assistance. The world’s largest humanitarian hub at Dubai’s International Humanitarian City is driving the COVID-19 response, with around 80 percent of World Health Organization-procured supplies transiting through the area. Capitalizing on the UAE’s geographic positioning and excellent logistics infrastructure, DIHC has served as a critical platform of assistance.
On May 4, the UAE, in partnership with the UN World Food Programme (WFP), launched an international air bridge operation to provide a lifeline of essential health and humanitarian supplies to nations grappling with the impact of COVID-19. That day, the UAE also took part in a global pledging conference hosted by European leaders to raise €7.5 billion to discover, produce, and distribute a vaccine for COVID-19.
Furthermore, in line with the UAE’s efforts to contribute to the global scientific community’s understanding of COVID-19, the UAE has shared genomic sequencing and mutation data on various global databases, including the open-source COVID-19 genome database Nexstrain, to help scientists worldwide trace the spread of outbreaks.
The minister for International cooperation, Reem bint Ibrahim emphasized that “Whether through the provision of PPE, sharing knowledge of genetic sequencing, or ensuring that vaccines reach all those in need, the UAE will continue to be a reliable partner and a voice for good.”