Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 27 May 2019

Timeframe: When Sheikh Khalifa met Queen Elizabeth II at Windsor Castle

It had been 24 years since a UAE President had gone to England

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II meets with the President, Sheikh Khalifa, at Windsor Castle. AFP
Britain's Queen Elizabeth II meets with the President, Sheikh Khalifa, at Windsor Castle. AFP

In 2013, as April drew to a close, the President, Sheikh Khalifa, undertook a historic two-day visit to the UK, where he attended a state banquet at Windsor Castle hosted by Queen Elizabeth II.

It had been 24 years since a UAE President had gone to England, when Sheikh Zayed, the Founding Father, visited in 1989. That trip was widely heralded as a positive turning point in relations between the countries.

In Windsor in 2013, large UAE flags flew proudly alongside the UK’s Union flag. While there was plenty of pomp and ceremony, business was also discussed, such as health, education, investment and military co-operation. Boris Johnson, then the mayor of London, had only recently described the UK capital as the “eighth emirate”.

Dominic Jermey, the UK’s ambassador to Abu Dhabi at the time, wrote in The National that the visit solidified the countries’ bond. “The affinity between our two countries runs in each other’s DNA.”

Updated: April 25, 2019 04:50 PM

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