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UAE Officials and Faith Leaders Arrive in Washington, DC to Spread Message of Peace at State Department Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom

July 24, 2018

Washington, DC (24 July 2018) – A delegation of government and faith leaders from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are visiting Washington, DC to highlight the country’s efforts to promote tolerance and inclusivity among the 200 nationalities who live and work together there. While in Washington, DC, delegation members will meet with US officials and other stakeholders, and attend the US State Department Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom (July 25-26).

The Ministerial brings together international leaders from governments, faith organizations and NGOs to discuss solutions for combatting religious persecution and ensuring religious freedom for all.

“We are in Washington this week to affirm the UAE’s commitment to promoting tolerance and inclusion among followers of different religions,” said Ali Al Nuaimi, delegation head and Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Elders. “In the UAE, 200 nationalities live, work and worship alongside each other, creating a culture of acceptance and peace in a region where more of that is needed.”

In addition to attending official Ministerial meetings, the delegates will conduct a series of meetings this week with US faith leaders, experts on countering violent extremism and think tank analysts. The group will also visit prominent Washington, DC landmarks and museums that address the topics of tolerance and inclusion.

“The delegation’s visit this week underscores the UAE’s shared values with the US,” said UAE Ambassador to the US Yousef Al Otaiba. “The UAE is committed to promoting moderation and countering extremism in all its forms.”

The delegation includes:

  • His Excellency Dr. Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, Delegation Lead and Secretary General, The Council of Muslim Elders
  • His Excellency Maqsoud Kruse, Executive Director, Hedayah Center
  • Dr. Yousif Abdallah Alobaidli, Director General, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
  • Andy Thompson, Reverend, St. Andrew’s Anglican Church, Abu Dhabi
  • Jeramie Rinne, Senior Pastor, Evangelical Community Church, Abu Dhabi
  • Surender Singh Kandhari, Chairman, Guru Nanak Darbar
  • Nahla Al Fahad, Film Director, “The Tainted Veil”