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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 September 2018

Family guidance offered to non-Muslim families in Abu Dhabi

The emirate aims to expand its tolerance through two new agreements

Maher Lamie and Father Bishoy at St Anthony’s Church in Abu Dhabi. Pawan Singh / The National
Maher Lamie and Father Bishoy at St Anthony’s Church in Abu Dhabi. Pawan Singh / The National

Non-Muslim families will receive family guidance services from the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department after it signed two agreements with the Angelical Church and the Orthodox Coptic Church in the capital on Saturday.

The agreements come in response to an earlier resolution by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department, on creating a registry of wills and probate for non-Muslims.

The resolution comes within the framework of the department's efforts to establish an institutional infrastructure dedicated to tolerance and acceptance of the other as well as conforming to the legislative structure of UAE law and the country's community culture.

The agreements were signed by Counsel Yousef Saeed Al Abri, the department's under-secretary, Pastor Bishoy Fakhri, patron of the Coptic Orthodox Church of St. Anthony, and Bishop Joseph Faragalla, head of the Evangelical Church Council in Abu Dhabi.

Mr Al Abri said the agreements inculcate a culture of tolerance by guiding families to survive personal disputes. He noted that the department provides its services through experts.

"Such a move will constitute a quality leap towards enhancing the competitive position of Abu Dhabi and establishing it as an ideal destination for residence and investment," he said. "It will also have a positive impact on attracting people with expertise to live and work in the emirate."

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