A humanitarian gesture, which the UAE chose to honor and thank the workers of “Expo 2020 Dubai”, turned into inspiring messages to the world about the protection of human rights as it should be.
A humanitarian glimpse through which the UAE has transcended the boundaries of rights into the space of tolerance, and penetrated the ground into the world of ideals, to effortlessly refute the allegations and slanders regarding its human rights file issued a few days ago by the European Parliament.
In the course of preparing to host “Expo 2020 Dubai”, the first International Expo to be held in the Arab world, the UAE’s top priority was to immortalize the efforts of the workers who were partners of success in this unique global event, so it erected a monument to the workers of Expo 2020 Dubai engraved with the names of more than 200 A thousand workers from all over the world, in appreciation and gratitude for their dedication to work towards the completion of the urban edifices at the site of the global event.
Messages and indications
The memorial, which was unveiled today, Friday, carried several messages from the UAE to the world, regarding the ideal image of the protection of human rights that goes beyond material appreciation to moral appreciation.
Messages about the approach of human brotherhood and tolerance that the UAE is keen to spread around the world, and applies it in word and deed in several initiatives, the last of which was its keenness to engrave the names of workers from all over the world on a monument commemorating an Emirati achievement, in an inspiring initiative that will be immortalized in the history of humanity.
The design of the monument itself came with great connotations and meanings, about the values of human cooperation.
The design also carried messages of pride and hope to the Arab region that the Emirates’ major achievements in various fields give hope to renew the golden age of Arab discoveries.
The memorial, which was designed by the famous architect Asif Khan, includes cylindrical stone pillars engraved with the name of each worker, which is inspired by the phases of the moon, and also refers to the science of cartography, and the engineering accuracy of the astrolabe, an ancient astronomical instrument that the Arabs called it plates.
The series of columns, each cut from a single stone, runs along the main corridor of Jubilee Park at Expo 2020 Dubai; It will be visited by millions from around the world, as these pillars embody the spirit of cooperation established in the UAE, and enhance the vision and essence of Expo 2020 Dubai, as it represents the first international event of this scale since the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The memorial came to constitute an inspiring model in consolidating human brotherhood and laying the foundations for tolerance, which is the mainstay of human rights.
Those messages carried by the memorial once again refuted allegations made by the European Parliament two weeks ago and included criticism of the human rights record in the UAE, which wanted suspicious parties to use it to influence “Expo 2020 Dubai”, but the response came from the historical participation of 192 countries around the world in Expo Dubai.
These messages also come within an integrated vision to support human rights in the UAE since its establishment half a century ago, as rights and freedoms have been incorporated into the country’s constitution, until reaching the 50 principles.
Over the course of 50 years, the UAE has reinforced that vision with a comprehensive legislative system and a rich arsenal, including decisions and laws supporting rights and protecting freedoms, the most recent of which was the issuance of the National Human Rights Commission Law a month ago.
These messages were clearly made clear in the official statements during the unveiling of the memorial.
Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashemy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General of Expo 2020 Dubai, unveiled the monument to Expo 2020 Dubai workers, praising the efforts of the workforce that built the site of the first World Expo to be held in the Arab world.
She revealed the memorial, which represents a tribute to the efforts of the workers and expresses the amazing achievements of more than 200,000 workers from all over the world, and their dedication to work to complete the urban edifices at the site of the global event.
Reem Al Hashemi said: “We wanted to celebrate the incredible work of more than 200,000 workers and their contributions to Expo 2020 Dubai. Each of them deserves our sincere thanks and appreciation for their tremendous efforts.”
She added, “Their dedication to their work was a cornerstone in organizing this historic event, the first World Expo to be held in our region and the most diverse and participating World Expo ever.. Thanks to their efforts, the world can come together at a time when international cooperation is the most urgent need to achieve the goal.” Our collective goal is to create a better future for us and future generations.”
Since laying the foundation stone for the construction of the Expo 2020 site in 2015, the workforce has completed more than 240 million man-hours, transforming what was once a sandy desert into the site of Expo 2020 Dubai in its current image, a world-class futuristic city and a major hub in Dubai’s urban plan 2040.
Expo 2020 Dubai has also prepared the “Worker Portraits Series”, which includes distinctive images that embody the diversity and spirit of the workforce in the international event, complemented by inspirational quotes from some members of the workforce, which highlights the achievements of these workers and their aspiration for the future.
During the period of Expo 2020 Dubai, these images will be displayed on digital screens in public spaces, where they will be viewed by visitors from all over the world.
This series follows the 2017 Audiovisual Exhibition, which presented the stories of Expo 2020 Dubai workers told in their own languages.
Throughout the construction period, Expo 2020 has pursued a comprehensive strategy entitled “Better Together”, a positive approach founded on the values of health, safety and worker welfare. This strategy supports six pillars: Leadership, Communication, Efficiency, Communication, Reward, Recognition, and Continuous Progress; Each pillar includes a number of activities and programmes.
Since its establishment, the UAE has attached top priority to the values of respect for human rights, deriving this from its cultural heritage, its constitution that guarantees civil liberties for all, and its legislative system that promotes the principles of justice, equality and tolerance, respect for rights, and support for humanitarian and relief work in line with the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
These efforts culminated in the establishment of the National Human Rights Commission, which was preceded by the creation of a Ministry for Tolerance and Coexistence, and the development of policies and laws to protect the rights of workers, children, women, senior citizens, people of determination, and prisoners, as well as contributing at the regional and international levels to combating the phenomenon of human trafficking.
The UAE has not satisfied itself with supporting human rights since its establishment until today, but has also established its commitment to human rights over the next 50 years to be an eternal approach to them through the “Fifty Principles” document, which was issued last month.
Whoever watches the memorial to the workers of Expo 2020 Dubai and reads the articles of the constitution, the laws of the Emirates and the “Fifty Principles” and sees their application on the ground in a country that embraces more than 200 nationalities of different cultures and religions living on its territory in harmony and harmony, discovers that the European Parliament’s decision, which included human rights criticism of the UAE It is based on lies, slanders and baseless allegations.
The UAE has strengthened several measures to ensure the protection of the rights of expatriate workers, by working on contract models approved by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, signing major agreements of the International Labor Organization on workers’ rights, establishing a wage protection system, and an employment insurance system, as well as banning the employment of juveniles. Constantly educating and informing workers and employers of their rights and duties, and developed several digital and traditional channels to reliably report labor disputes and incidents of abuse.
The UAE has ratified 9 major ILO conventions related to workers’ rights, and enacted many laws to protect workers’ rights, including laws in the areas of employment, wages, housing and health.
Workers in the UAE enjoy full protection from any racial discrimination during their stay in the country, and the work environment in the UAE is characterized by equality between men and women in the workplace, taking into account that women are granted periods of maternity leave or paid maternity leave.
Thus, the UAE organized a package of laws and legislative amendments that made it a prosperous environment for human rights in which human dignity is preserved and its status is elevated in light of complete equality among all, guaranteed by the country’s constitution and within its protection.