In the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, delivered a keynote speech at the 7th World Government Summit, which started today in Dubai.
Also present were H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, and H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.
Sheikh Abdullah said the visit made by His Holiness Pope Francis, Head of the Catholic Church, and Dr Ahmed el-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Al Azhar, to the UAE and their signing of the 'Document of Human Fraternity, helped open a new page in the history of religious dialogue.
"Pope Francis and Dr. el-Tayeb's journey of peace started years ago. They sat together as brothers and friends to tell the world that peace is difficult to achieve, but it is not impossible," he said.
Sheikh Abdullah referred to the papal mass held by Pope Francis in Abu Dhabi which was attended by over 180,000 faithful.
"It was a pleasant scene to see them filled with joy as they greet His Holiness the Pope. It was a message from the UAE to all residents that as a government and people, we are committed, not only to provide care and decent living standards to them but also to provide means to them to practice their faith."
He also hailed the launching of the Human Fraternity Award - Dar Zayed, by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, which was jointly bestowed on Pope Francis and the Grand Imam.