ABU DHABI // Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, led condolences for 45 soldiers killed on Friday in Yemen, with a visit to some of the servicemen injured in the attack.
Sheikh Mohammed visited the men at Zayed Military Hospital. He praised the soldiers’ steadfastness, heroism and dedication while defending their rights and supporting their brothers in Yemen.
Accompanying the Crown Prince were Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed, National Security Adviser and Deputy Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council, and Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.
Other UAE leaders and foreign diplomats also paid their respects to the families of the men who died in the attack orchestrated by the Houthis.
On the other side of the country, in Fujairah, Sheikh Saif bin Zayed, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, visited the families of several of the deceased.
Sheikh Saif prayed for fallen servicemen Mohammed Saeed Al Saredi, whose family lives in Al Sidr; Khalifa Abdullah Al Saredi, from Al Hala; Khalifa Mohammed Al Yamahi and Rashid Saeed Al Yamahi, from Al Towbin; and Walid Ahmed Al Khadim, from Dibba.
Among the foreign diplomats to pay their respects was Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo, the Spanish foreign minister, who called on Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, the Minister for Foreign Affairs.
Sheikh Abdullah’s Australian counterpart, Julie Bishop, also extended her sympathies.
The UAE Foreign Minister also met Stephen O’Brien, the United Nations under secretary general for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief.
Mr O’Brien offered his condolences during the meeting. They discussed cooperation between the UAE and UN with the international organisation’s humanitarian programmes in a number of countries hit by disasters and conflicts.
In addition, female staff members from the Ministry of Interior paid their respects to the mothers of the martyrs. The mothers, they said, were a symbol of true courage.
“These women are prime examples of what it means to be an Emirati mother,” said Col Dr Nawal Al Kathiri, of Abu Dhabi Police’s Forensic Evidence Department. “The martyrdom of their sons is like an adorned scarf that decorates these women with pride and honour and serves as a translation of their love for the country.”
Maj Amina Al Baloushi, chairwoman of the Emirates Women Police Association, said: “We stand in appreciation and gratefulness for the souls of our martyrs and for their great sacrifice.
“We also stand in tribute and in gratitude for the martyrs’ mothers, who raised their children to embrace sacrifice, courage and redemption, and who will forever be remembered for their honourable gesture.”
As the families have started coming to terms with their loss, a number of projects to support them have been put into place.
One of the latest was announced by Hamad bin Ghalita, the private secretary to the Ruler of Ajman, Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, who said he would pay the substitute Haj costs of all servicemen who had died in Yemen.
Mr bin Ghalita said he was proud of the martyrs’ service and sacrifice. He extended his condolences to the country’s Rulers and to the men’s families. He has coordinated with Al Ihsan Charity Association with regards to covering all finances.
Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, deputy crown prince, second deputy premier and minister of defence of Saudi Arabia, also issued directives to treat Emirati and Bahraini soldiers killed in the line of duty in Yemen as Saudi martyrs, materially and morally.
“The blood of our martyrs will not go in vain, and the coalition will continue its operations with determination to defeat the rebels and their supporters who tampered with the destiny of the brotherly people of Yemen, and their attempt to destabilise the region,” Prince Mohammed said.