ABU DHABI, 16th November, 2022 (WAM) -- Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, has said that under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE leads global efforts to promote the values of tolerance and coexistence.
In his keynote speech on the second day of the Global Media Congress marking the International Day for Tolerance on 16th November, Sheikh Nahyan thanked the patron of the first edition of the congress, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Presidential Court, and appreciated his keenness to support media outlets in performing their role in raising people's awareness and enriching knowledge.
The second day of the event was attended by Dr. Ramzan bin Abdullah Al Nuaimi, Minister of Information Affairs of Bahrain, Ahmed Afif, Vice President of the Seychelles, and Mohammed Jalal Al Rayssi, Director-General of the Emirates News Agency (WAM).
The inauguration was also attended by Daud Aweis Jama, Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism of Somalia; Monica Mutsvangwa, Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services of Zimbabwe; Minister, of Justice Civil Service and Administration Reforms of the Comoros, Jay Ahmed Al-Shanafi; Mohammed Idris, the Director-General of the media authority of Ethiopia; Babiker Diagen, Chairman of the National Council for the Regulation of Audiovisual Communication in Senegal, and several ministers from friendly countries, along with ambassadors accredited in the country.
Sheikh Nahyan said that the UAE's stature and pioneering role in the field of tolerance, coexistence and dialogue were underscored by the establishment of the Ministry of Tolerance and Coexistence, whose goal is to raise the awareness of all citizens and residents, as well as all institutions, schools, universities and media outlets.
The ministry also aims to enable everyone to engage in the community and the entire world without discrimination, he added, highlighting its crucial role in producing knowledge on tolerance and coexistence, proposing draft laws, organising events that promote the values of tolerance and coexistence, hosting an ambitious research programme, and establishing indexes that gauge the country's tolerance.
He pointed out that the ministry plays a major role in forging local and international partnerships, and is a key partner in many international agreements and conventions related to human rights, which aim to address hate speech and promote global peace.
Sheikh Nahyan noted that the current situation in the UAE highlights its openness to the world and promotes tolerance and coexistence, underscoring its confidence and keenness to showcase its national identity and distinguishing characteristics to the entire world, as well as expressing its belief that all people are members of one human community working to achieve prosperity. This belief was proven by the signing of the Human Fraternity Document in Abu Dhabi in 2019 by His Holiness Pope Francis, Head of the Catholic Church, and His Eminence Dr. Ahmed El-Tayyeb, Grand Imam of Al-Azhar and Chairman of the Muslim Council of Elders, with the support of President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed.
He then stressed that the UAE's experiences have shown that the efforts to promote the culture of tolerance and coexistence should not be limited to theoretical discussions, but they should involve practical programmes and social and economic leadership projects, which could offer economic value as they enable the establishment of various projects and partnerships and boost overall innovation.
Media outlets have a major role in advancing local and international communities and promoting the values of tolerance and human fraternity, he further added.
"As you gather at the Global Media Congress, you have a duty and responsibility to help readers and listeners learn about other cultures and be open to them, as well as to convince them that pluralism and diversity are sources of strength for human communities. You have a duty to work with everyone, whether children, the youth, families, religious people, business people, schools, universities or civil society organisations, so they can perform their allocated roles," Sheikh Nahyan said. The duty of media outlets is to ensure openness to global experiences, always be informed and continue their ongoing development, he affirmed.
"You must always recognise the key role of tolerance in advancing media outlets, and set an example of diversity, pluralism, integrity and further learning," he added.
At the end of the speech, Sheikh Nahyan thanked everyone who contributed to hosting and organising the Global Media Congress, wishing them a successful conference.
He expressed his hope that the event's discussions would help make media outlets more efficient tools for connecting people, addressing ignorance and eliminating negative stereotypes.