Which countries are similar to Dubai
Ambassador of the Emirates: "Germany and the Emirates are similar in many ways"
With the Gulf Arabs, entertaining guests follows an ancient ritual. First a very small cup of Arabic coffee is poured. Always. When the guest and host have drunk this very strong and almost bright yellow coffee, everyone is given a much larger cup of green tea. Always. Except for Hafsa Alulama.
During the interview, the Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates in Germany drinks a large filter coffee without milk after the Arab one. Alulama studied economics and computer science in San Diego and at the London School of Economics. She is the first woman to hold this post and was accredited in June. Just before her government broke old rules too.
WORLD: Madam Ambassador, it was known that the Emirates and Israel had grown closer to each other. Still, many were surprised that peace could be reached so quickly. Why right now?
Hafsa Alulama: The subject of tolerance is very important to us. We have declared the past year the year of tolerance. This also included a visit by Pope Francis to our country and his public service with almost 200,000 believers. We want to build bridges, and for that you have to recognize the other. There is currently a lot of instability in the Middle East and we can only counter it if as many actors as possible work together. That is why the time seemed right to send a positive signal. We wanted to show that progress is possible in our part of the world.
WORLD: But so far one had the impression that there was real hatred of Israel in the Arab world.
Alulama: Sometimes the external impression is deceptive. Above all, the people of the Arab countries want stability, an end to violence, and prospects for their future. Hatred is consciously generated by some forces because without hostility they would lose their livelihood. Of course, there is a feeling with some in the Arab world that history has not always been fair. But what use is it to remain forever in the past? You in Europe have also learned how much everyone benefits from overcoming old contradictions. We have to think long-term, beyond the noise of daily politics. We're actually good at that. I believe there is such a thing as the wisdom of the desert. After all, it is from there that the prophets of three world religions came.
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