Emir joins Tunisians in anniversary celebrations
TUNIS The Emir His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani on Saturday joined the people and leaders of Tunisia in celebrating the first anniversary of the Tunisian Revolution at a special function held at the Conference Palace in Tunis. Speaking during the celebrations, HH the Emir reiterated Qatar's readiness to contribute to a fund for those injured during the uprising as well as the dependants of the Tunisians martyred in the revolution and lauded everyone who helped in the peaceful transition following the revolution. HH the Emir said that destiny responded to the will of the people who turned poets' dreams into reality, subjected politics to the aspirations of people and set an example in peaceful change that opened the doors wide to change and transformation, dispelled despair and created a human model that has impressed the world. HH the Emir pointed to the role of the Tunisian army and its chief General Rachid Ammar who served as a model for a patriotic army that defends its people and protects its institutions, which helped in the gradual and peaceful power transfer. HH the Emir added: "Insistence of the Tunisian people, intellectuals and political forces on a peaceful change and acceptance of all ideological currents is indeed indicative of a consciousness that enlightens the way for populaces yearning for freedom and dignity." HH the Emir stressed that walking the path of development for the greater good of the whole society was the best tool with which to confront problems and find solutions to them. "This is a huge responsibility but we are confident there are brothers and friends who are interested in your success," HH the Emir said. ''I am pleased and honoured to be here among you on this day to commemorate the first anniversary of the Tunisian revolution. I cannot but express my deep appreciation of the gesture of the Government and people of the Republic of Tunisia in inviting to share in the joy and pride the great people of Tunisian feel in the march of their revolution which heralds an era of freedom, development and stability," HH the Emir said. He praised the Tunisian people as a pioneer of the change that achieves dignity and justice for the oppressed people in the Arab nation, which looks forward to progress and justice, and whose populace aspires to be masters of their own destiny. ''I am confident that the Arab peoples who live in dignity and freedom in their countries will push for the creation of big blocs in the interest of their collective good,'' HH the Emir said. HH the Emir contented that everyone in the East and West must realise that what is happening today in the Arab world are not military coups but people's movements seeking justice and freedom and should be dealt with accordingly.
HH the Emir said that the people of Qatar and Tunisia have a common culture and history. The sentiments of Qatari and Arab people in general were a true reflection of the common culture and history, HH the Emir said. He stressed that it was the duty of Qatar to stand by Tunisia as it negotiated the path of transition. "The time has come to integrate the economy of Arab nations," HH the Emir said while expressing the confidence that richer Arab countries must stand by Tunisia in this transitional period. HH the Emir said that Tunisia's martyrs were Qatar's martyrs as well. To conclude, HH the Emir thanked the Tunisian president, the prime minister, members of the Constituent Assembly and all those who have helped the country make its transition. Members of the official delegation accompanying HH the Emir also participated in celebrations.