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His Highness General
Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi
Assumed office
2 November 2004
Emir Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Preceded by Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Deputy Supreme Commander of the Union Defense Force
Assumed office
15 January 2005
President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Supreme Commander Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Personal details
Born 11 March 1961(1961-03-11) (age 60)
Abu Dhabi
Spouse(s) Sheikha Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan
Alma mater Royal Military Academy Sandhurst
Religion Islam
House Al Nahyan
Father HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan
Mother HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Al Ketbi
Military service
Allegiance United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates
Service/branch United Arab Emirates Air Force
Years of service 1979-present
Rank General
Commands Deputy Supreme Commander
Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces
Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces
Commander of the Air Force and Air Defence

Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan (born 11 March 1961) is the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

Early life[edit | edit source]

President of the United States George W. Bush walks with Al Nayhan through an honor guard upon his arrival at Camp David in June 2008

Al Nahyan was born on 11 March 1961.[1] He is the third son of Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the first President of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Abu Dhabi, and his third wife, Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Al Ketbi.[2][3] He has five younger full-brothers: Hamdan, Hazza, Tahnoun, Mansour, and Abdullah.[4] They are known as Bani Fatima or sons of Fatima.[5][6]

Political and business career[edit | edit source]

In November 2003, his father Zayed bin Sultan appointed Sheikh Mohammed as deputy crown prince of Abu Dhabi.[2] Upon the death of his father, Al Nayhan became crown prince of Abu Dhabi in November 2004 and was appointed deputy supreme commander of the UAE armed forces in January 2005. Later that month, he was promoted to the rank of General. Since December 2004 he has also been the chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, which is responsible for the development and planning of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and is a member of the Supreme Petroleum Council.[7] He also serves as a special advisor to the President of the UAE, Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, his older brother. He is also head of the Abu Dhabi council for economic development (ADCED), which is the economic policy advisory council in Abu Dhabi.

Al Nahyan is also the head of the Mubadala Development Company which, since its establishment in 2002, represents the main investment vehicle for the government of Abu Dhabi. Al Nahyan is also a director of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, the Sovereign wealth fund of Abu Dhabi.

In addition, he is the head of the UAE offsets program bureau and is the head of the Abu Dhabi Education Council which was established in 2005. His efforts in the realm of economic development are aimed at increasing economic diversification in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. As the head of the UAE offsets group, Al Nahyan is involved with the task of channelling defence-related investments into profitable projects across different sectors in order to help diversify the economy of the UAE.[8] In 2008, the first group of Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed University scholars were selected as part of the New York University at Abu Dhabi campus intitiative, recognizing outstanding students in the United Arab Emirates and providing them with special academic and leadership opportunities.[9]

June 2009 saw Al Nayhan and then President Nicolas Sarkozy of France inaugurate an exhibition at the Emirates Palace Hotel, which included works of art purchased for the Louvre Abu Dhabi, as well as loans from the French national museums to mark the beginning of the construction work of the Louvre outpost, located in the cultural district in Saadiyat Island. Al Nayhan also stated that he was confident that the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi would be able to "accumulate a prestigious art collection" by the time of its opening in 2012.[10]

In November 2010, Al Nayhan and UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan welcomed Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh to the UAE for their second state visit.[11][12] Al Nahyan also accompanied the Queen and the Duke on a tour of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque at the beginning of their visit.[13] In January 2011, Al Nahyan received U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.[14]

In 2012, he represented the UAE in the Nuclear Security Summit (2012) hosted by South Korea.

Sheikh Mohammed representing UAE in the NSS 2012

Interests and activities[edit | edit source]

Al Nahyan at the Cityscape Abu Dhabi in 2008

Al Nahyan is actively engaged in several projects targeted at increasing the welfare of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. He has initiated projects in various areas, such as economic development, education and environmental protection.

He also heads the Mohamed Bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, a philanthropic endowment established to provide targeted grants to individual species conservation initiatives, recognize leaders in the field of species conservation and elevate the importance of species in the broader conservation debate.[15]

Moreover, in the realm of humanitarian affairs, Al Nahyan has been underlining his commitment to the fight against human trafficking by funding the 'Global Report on Trafficking Persons' through a Dh55 million donation to the United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT).[16][17] In 2011 Al Nayhan and the Gates Foundation pledged $50 million each to fund the purchase and delivery of vaccines for children in Afghanistan and Pakistan.[18]

Another area of interest of Al Nahyan is the education sector. His activities in this field include his role as President of the Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR). The centre is dedicated to the publication of academic analyses on topics relevant to the region. In the area of school curricula and higher education, Al Nahyan is also chairman of the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), which was founded in 2005.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan at the Cityscape Abu Dhabi 2008

ADEC monitors and develops the educational system of the Emirate. Methods of the council’s work include running surveys, aiming at an integration of students and parents in assessment processes and increasing the exchange of ideas with international educational institutions in order to foster development in the educational sector. In addition, Al Nahyan is committed to environmental protection. He set up the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund motivated by his interest in the preservation and protection, both locally and on an international level, of endangered species and plants. A passionate falconer himself, Al Nahyan is committed to the protection of falcons, as well as other species, including the oryx and the houbara from Arabian Peninsula.[8][19] In line with his dedication to environment protection, he has also taken a lead in alternative energy projects in Abu Dhabi, primarily Masdar City.[8]

Awards and honours[edit | edit source]

As well as the UAE, Al Nahyan has received numerous[vague]

citations and decorations from Bahrain, Qatar, Malaysia, Morocco, Pakistan, United States, United Kingdom, Spain,[20] France and Italy.

A species of woodlizard - Enyalioides binzayedi - has been named after him as the creator of the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund that helped fund the expeditions leading to the discovery of the species in the Cordillera Azul National Park in Peru.[21]

Personal life[edit | edit source]

Al Nahyan is married to Shaikha Salama bint Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Nahyan.[22] They married in 1981.[23]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "H.H. General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan". https://www.cpc.gov.ae/en-us/thecrownprince/HHsBiography/Pages/Childhood.aspx. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "With MBZ’s promotion, Sheikha Fatima sons take centre stage". 12 November 2003. http://www.gsn-online.com/with-mbz%E2%80%99s-promotion-sheikha-fatima-sons-take-centre-stage-20031112. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  3. Davidson, Christopher M. (29 November 2009). "A tale of two desert dynasties". http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/6678142/A-tale-of-two-desert-dynasties.html. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  4. "UAE Succession Update: The Post-Zayed Scenario". 28 September 2004. http://www.cablegatesearch.net/cable.php?id=04ABUDHABI3410. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  5. "Abu Dhabi’s family business". 5 May 2009. http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/197e16f2-399b-11de-b82d-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2QYbDPdDK. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  6. Bruce Maddy-Weitzman (1 August 2002). Middle East Contemporary Survey: 1999. The Moshe Dayan Center. pp. 629. ISBN 978-965-224-049-1. http://books.google.com/books?id=zs57d0logH8C&pg=PA629. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  7. "Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) - The Supreme Petroleum Council (SPC)". ADNOC. 25 June 2011. http://www.adnoc.ae/Content.aspx?newid=24&mid=24. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan Abu Dhabi
  9. "First group selected as Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed University scholars". http://www.ameinfo.com/164398.html. Retrieved 23 July 2008. 
  10. Nadia Ptashchenko (8 July 2009). Art Mobility Between Museums in Europe: A Case Study of the Hermitage Amsterdam and the Guggenheim Bilbao. GRIN Verlag. pp. 101. ISBN 978-3-640-36824-2. http://books.google.com/books?id=PRiDpL43T1kC&pg=PA101. Retrieved 21 March 2012. 
  11. Mitya Underwood (13 November 2012). "Sheikh Mohammed welcomes back old friends to capital". http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-news/sheikh-mohammed-welcomes-back-old-friends-to-capital. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  12. H.H. Sheikh
  13. "The Leading Mohammed bin Zayed Site on the Net". Mohammed bin Zayed. http://www.mohammedbinzayed.com/site/en/news_show.php?n_id=286. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  14. "The Leading Mohammed bin Zayed Site on the Net". Mohammed bin Zayed. http://www.mohammedbinzayed.com/site/en/news_show.php?n_id=323. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  15. "What is the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund?". Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund. http://www.mbzspeciesconservation.org/. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  16. "Statement of the minister of state for foreign affairs before HRCUAE". http://www.uaeinteract.com/docs/Statement_of_the_minister_of_state_for_foreign_affairs_before_HRC/34855.htm. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  17. UAE Yearbook 2010, Trident Press Ltd, 2010, p. 182
  18. "Gates Foundation, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan Pledge $100 Million for Disease Prevention". Philanthropy News Digest. 27 January 2011. http://foundationcenter.org/pnd/news/story.jhtml?id=324000009. Retrieved 22 February 2012. 
  19. "The Donor". The Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund. http://www.mbzspeciesconservation.org/the-donor.php. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  20. Boletín Oficial del Estado
  21. doi:10.3897/zookeys.277.3594
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  22. "Shaikha Fatima receives female diplomats". 10 August 2011. http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Shaikha+Fatima+receives+female+diplomats.-a0263957748. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  23. Barlow, Tom (6 April 2011). "The Most Extravagant Weddings". http://www.forbes.com/2011/04/06/kate-middleton-prince-william-royal-weddings.html. Retrieved 18 April 2013. 

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