In this chapter, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, talks about the beginning of the dream; the United Arab Emirates.
In the history, there are indescribable moments; one of them was the declaration of the United Arab Emirates.
We, the Sheikhs and rulers, continued the meetings of the Federal Supreme Council, and we decided to hold a meeting in Abu Dhabi in October 1969, with the attendance of the representatives from all nine emirates.
Sheikh Zayed bin Zayed Al Nahyan started the meeting by saying that "we all have a historic moment to face and all the mysteries the future might hold, considering the results of failure and its costs".
These words marked a great beginning of the meetings as Sheikh Zayed was selected as the president, Sheikh Rashid as the vice-president, and Qatar's crown prince Sheikh Khalifa bin Hamad Al Thani as prime minister. Abu Dhabi was announced temporary capital for the union.
The British destroyed our happiness when they sent a statement to the council, delivered by Stuart Crawford. Some of the attendees of the meeting decided to leave the meeting in great anger after seeing the statement.
The dream drifted apart farther when Qatar announced its constitution on April 2, 1970.
They saw no hope for the union, and took such a brave step alone. Bahrain followed them on August 14, 1971.
During April and May, my brothers and I worked so hard to reach an agreement with the remaining seven emirates, and on Sunday, July 18,1971, we announced the declaration of the Union.
In December 1971, the British resident agreed to the declaration.
In the same month, the rulers of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman and Fujairah held a meeting in Dubai and elected Sheikh Zayed as the president, Sheikh Rashid as the vice-president, and my brother Sheikh Maktoum as prime minister.
They made an announcement about the temporary constitution of the UAE.
We still welcome any Arab nation that wants unity, because we believe that unity will strengthen us all. Even if we can't unite the land, why don't we unite our hearts?
In what he is calling his "incomplete biography", His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has broken his latest book, Qissati (My Story), into 50 chapters, narrating 50 stories in his 50 years of serving the nation. Khaleej Times got a signed copy of the book from the Dubai Ruler and everyday, we will be featuring excerpts from each of the 50 chapters.