Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of Development and International Cooperation, President of the UAE Committee for Coordination of Humanitarian Foreign Aid, opened the Regional Humanitarian in Action Conference held from 24 to 26, February 2015 at the International Humanitarian City (IHC) in Dubai.
It was organised in collaboration with Humanitarian Policy Grope (HPG) and Oversees International Development (OID).
Hosting the Conference in the UAE and at the IHC in particular is in line with the objectives of the IHC Strategy 2015-2021 launched last month by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai.
In her opening speech, Sheikha Lubna emphasized the UAE’s growing role in the humanitarian arena, and that the UAE foreign aid ratio is an important indicator that reflects the ability to respond to various humanitarian crises around the world, it also mirrors the clear vision of the UAE leadership towards serving the humanitarian sector locally and internationally capitalising on the competitive advantages of the UAE and its strong international relations with many countries.
Sheikha Lubna pointed that strengthening the regional approach and improving the overall efficiency of humanitarian work, reflects positively the national and international support and efforts to strengthen international development and humanitarian work in various forms, in addition to the value of collective improvement to enhance the response to natural disasters and complex emergencies, through the involvement of humanitarian institutions’ regional work and partnerships that encourage innovation, highlighting the important role of the donors in the Middle East.
This is the first of its kind conference that brings together intergovernmental organizations to discuss what needs to be done to improve the humanitarian work at the regional level. The IHC through its “Connect: Humanity” pillar is seeking to be the center of global humanitarian network and events hosting innovative workshops to overcome the challenges faced by workers in the humanitarian sector, taking into account the importance of cooperation and coordination between all local and international humanitarian organizations.
Through this unique gathering of humanitarian experts coming from different countries, field researches and experiences will be reviewed and discussed for better future coordination to draw systematic steps and common humanitarian action. There is no doubt that the combined efforts and efficiency of relief operations in the field rely heavily on effective and successful partnerships among humanitarian organizations.
Ibrahim Bu Melha, the Cultural and Humanitarian Adviser to the Ruler of Dubai, portrayed a picture for the current humanitarian scene during his speech and emphasized the challenges and constraints related to access to the affected areas, the security issues and lack of aid resources, in addition to other challenges faced by the international humanitarian organizations, in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and the Ebola virus outbreak, as well as hurricanes and humanitarian disasters that have hit East Asia, stressing the importance of the UAE role in general and IHC in particular to overcome those obstacles and challenges.