61-year-old Sheikh bin Zayed elected new UAE president
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan will be the next President of the UAE, the Federal Supreme Council announced on Saturday.
The 61-year-old leader will be the country’s third president, succeeding his brother Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who passed away on May 13, at the age of 73.
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, who served as Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi since November 2004, will also be the 17th Ruler of Abu Dhabi.AdvertisingAdAdvertising
According to a Wam statement, the Federal Supreme Council convened at Al Mushrif Palace in Abu Dhabi and unanimously elected Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed as the UAE President. The new president is set to hold office for a five-year term before being eligible for re-election.
The meeting was chaired by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and attended by the UAE rulers.
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed has also served as the Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces since January 2005. He is known for playing a key role in developing the UAE Armed Forces in terms of strategic planning, training, organisational structure and promoting defence capabilities.
Under his leadership, the UAE Armed Forces has emerged as a leading institution that is widely admired by international military organisations.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid congratulated the new president upon his election.
Hailing Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed as “the carrier of Sheikh Zayed’s legacy, the founder of our centennial and the protector of our union,” Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid pledged allegiance to the successor.
“Our country shall follow him towards the path of glory and prosperity.”
The Federal Supreme Council members and Rulers of the UAE reaffirmed their keenness to continue implementing the principles laid down by the late president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who carried on the legacy of the UAE’s Founding Father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. The late rulers’ contributions have gained the UAE a prominent stature on the regional and international scale.
In a statement, the council expressed its full confidence that the people of the UAE will remain, as Sheikh Zayed and the founders believed, “a faithful guardian of the Union and its gains at all levels”.
The UAE began 40 days of mourning on Friday following the death of President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who ruled the UAE since 2004. Government and private offices have been shut for three days starting Saturday, with work to resume on Tuesday, May 17.