Monday March 27, 2023

Mohammed Bin Zayed: a visionary leader

January 30, 2023

Pakistan is looking forward to two-day visit to Islamabad by President of United Arab Emirates Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The potential announcement by the President to increase the country's foreign reserves, new investments and possible mediation between India and Pakistan are all highly anticipated.

This visit could be a watershed moment for the country. It could bring much-needed economic relief and potentially break the ice on long-standing issues between India and Pakistan. The UAE has already played a role in mediating the 2021 ceasefire agreement to maintain the 2003 ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC). Following this, the two premiers exchanged letters, as well as unconfirmed reports of backdoor contacts to de-escalate the situation.

A visionary leader himself, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has been instrumental in transforming the UAE into a global powerhouse. His commitment to diversifying the economy from its dependence on oil, promoting social and religious tolerance, investing in infrastructure, education, healthcare and renewable energy has enabled the UAE to become a business and tourism hub.

His diplomatic efforts have also enabled the UAE to become a key player in regional diplomatic issues, mediating rival factions in regional conflicts, promoting regional security and participating in regional economic initiatives. With his leadership, the UAE has established strong relationship with countries all over the world including Israel, and is now seen as a reliable mediator in international conflicts as well.

The UAE was the first Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nation to sign the Abraham Accords. Two years passed by after the Abraham Accords were signed on September 15, 2020. Normalising diplomatic relations between Israel, the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco, and potentially Sudan, progress in developing relations has yielded substantive results for the UAE.

In addition, the UAE has taken proactive steps to reduce tensions with its arch-rival, Iran, by adopting a policy of engagement. This is in stark contrast to the widely-held belief that Israel and the UAE share the same opinion of Tehran. The diplomatic approach is a living testimony to the peaceful vision of Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Russian President Vladimir Putin praised the UAE for acting as a mediator in the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, saying the Gulf country can play a significant role in efforts to reach an agreement. During a meeting in Saint Petersburg, Russia, with UAE President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan (MBZ), Putin expressed his appreciation for the UAE's commitment to resolving the crisis.

"I am aware of your concern about the current state of affairs and your desire to contribute to the resolution of all disputed issues, including the current crisis in Ukraine," Putin said. Overall, the UAE has proven itself to be a reliable and effective mediator in the region, and hence Putin expressed his appreciation for the country's efforts to promote peace and stability.

Under President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE has demonstrated its commitment to peace and stability in the region through its investments in infrastructure, energy and technology in a number of countries. Additionally, the UAE has been a crucial ally in the international struggle against terrorism, offering both financial and logistical aid to counter-terrorism initiatives. The UAE's involvement in Syria and Afghanistan has been a direct result of this role.

The UAE has also offered to serve as a mediator between India and Pakistan, a gesture that was praised by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. The UAE has developed close ties with India.

The sizable Pakistani diaspora in the UAE has been a major contributor to Pakistan's economic development with their remittances. Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan has been instrumental in fostering strong ties between the UAE and Pakistan through his policy of aid. By investing in the country, he has helped Islamabad to bolster its foreign reserves, making the UAE a vital contributor to Pakistan's economic development and stability.

In response to the recent floods and humanitarian crisis, the UAE field hospital provided medical aid to thousands of flood victims in villages across Sindh and Balochistan. This was made possible through collaboration between The Zayed Giving Initiatives Humanitarian Coalition, Dar Al Ber Society, Sharjah Charitable House Foundation, Saudi German Hospitals Group, Emirates Medical Relief Programme and Emirates Programme for Specialised Health Volunteering.

Additionally, Emirates opened an air bridge to Pakistan, offering free cargo capacity for relief aid, including food and other emergency relief goods, to be flown directly to five Pakistani airports.

Furthermore, the two countries should strengthen their defence cooperation. Pakistan can offer training and other technical assistance to the UAE, while the UAE's construction boom will require the use of skilled labour which Pakistan can provide. By working together, the UAE and Pakistan can ensure a brighter future for both nations.

In summary, as Pakistan welcomes the royal quest in Islamabad, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan is a leader to admire and emulate. He is a visionary who has devoted his life to improving his people and the UAE.

His dedication to progress and development has resulted in the UAE becoming a global leader in a variety of fields, ranging from technology and innovation to education and healthcare. He has also been a champion of regional peace and stability, working tirelessly to promote inter-national dialogue and understanding. His leadership has been an inspiration to many, and his

legacy will shape the future of the UAE for future


Jan Achakzai is a geopolitical analyst, a Balochistan politician and a former media and strategic communications advisor to GOB. He tweets @jan_Achakzai