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Australian condolences for United Arab Emirates President.



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MEDIA RELEASE MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS ALEXANDER DOWNER

FA148 4 November 2004

AUSTRALIAN CONDOLENCES FOR UNITED ARAB EMIRATES PRESIDENT

On 5 November, the Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Bruce Billson, will convey the condolences of the Australian Government and people to the new President of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, following the death of his father on 2 November.

Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan was the ruler of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and founding President of the UAE. He became President when the federation of seven Gulf Emirates was established in 1971. Sheikh Zayed was greatly respected by his people and by the international community. He leaves, as his legacy, a unified, prosperous and progressive nation.

Australia attaches importance to its growing friendship and cooperation with the UAE. The relationship has a strong commercial focus and has expanded in recent years to encompass significant defence, security and people-to-people links.

Mr Billson leaves for the UAE tonight (4 November).

Media Inquiries: Chris Kenny (Ministerial) 6277 7500 / 0419 206 890 Julie McDonald (DFAT Media Liaison) 6261 1555

Media releases and speeches are available from DFAT via the internet. http://www.dfat.gov.au/