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Sayings of some senior leaders and thinkers on tolerance

Emirati Visions on Tolerance

The late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan

"The most valuable advice for my children is to keep away from arrogance. I believe that the great and strong people cannot be degraded or weakened by treating people with modesty and tolerance. Tolerance among humans begets mercy. One should be merciful and peaceful towards his fellow human brothers."

His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan

The UAE President

"Reading opens minds, promotes tolerance, openness and communication, and prepares an educated, informed and open-minded people, veering them away from extremism and impenetrability."

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Vice-President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai

"We are keen on promoting tolerance because history is a good teacher. Moreover, our present taught us that the events occurred in our region over the past five years took place due to fanaticism, as well as the religious, sectarian and ideological intolerance. Therefore, to support tolerance in all its forms and kinds, we have appointed the Minister of tolerance."

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Vice-President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai

The UAE, under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, is on the path of moderation and tolerance in the application of the teachings and provisions of our true Islam contained in the Book of Allah and the Hadiths of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Vice-President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai

"Tolerance is the basis of building and linking societies, in addition to disseminating values of peace and coexistence. Furthermore, the UAE society is righteous, tolerant and keen on humanitarian traditions and values."

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces

"Through its policies and regional module, UAE sends positive messages about the necessity of tolerance, co-existence, and joint development work to face many challenges that we encounter as part of the international community."

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE's Armed Forces

"The UAE, through its benevolent approach that was established by Sheikh Zayed, embodies a global model of tolerance and coexistence. It has won the love of millions around the world. There are many people throughout the country who deeply love UAE ... coexist with us ... and share our dreams and aspirations."

His Highness Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Presidential Affairs

The UAE possess all economic, cultural and civilizational prerequisites to establish a strong international position in all sectors. Our aim is to instill its position around the world and foster the love of the UAE in the hearts of peoples. Our country enjoys a prestigious position, in both the Arab and international scales, and we want to strengthen this position further and invest our cultural, humanitarian and economic diplomacy to the benefit of our people and the peoples of the world

His Highness Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council

Tolerance within the UAE enlightened leadership concept is a noble human value and a universal principle bonding people of all nationalities, races, religions and political and cultural affiliations. Tolerance is vital to realize that the progress of human civilization has become more threatened than ever by various causes of conflict and struggle resulting from the absence of the culture of tolerance.

His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Bin Mabarak Al Nahayan

Minister of Tolerance

"The leadership, government and the people of the UAE are inspired by Sheikh Zayed’s legacy, thoughts, and firm approach to make the UAE an oasis of tolerance, pluralism and diversity, where people can live in an environment of acceptance, respect, and harmony."

His Excellency Dr. Anwar Mohammed Gargash

Minister of State for Foreign Affairs

The UAE is considered a role model of tolerance in the Arab world, and it constantly promotes this message. In UAE, We want to establish an open society that accepts the other. Today, UAE is a role model in this regard.

Her Excellency Sheikha Lubna Bint Khalid Al Qasimi

Former Minister of Tolerance

"The UAE has established its philosophy of tolerance on the basis of the tolerant Islamic doctrine, the Emirati Constitution, the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, as well as the genuine Emirati ethics, international conventions, common sense, history, the human nature and the shared values. Such thoughtful philosophy should be fostered. Moreover, exaggeration, extremism, violence, hatred and discrimination should be confronted through the dissemination of moderation, tolerance, coexistence, peace and acceptance of the other on the intellectual, cultural, religious and ethnical levels."

Sultan Bin Ali Al Owais

An Emirati writer and poet

"The tolerance that the UAE has heralded throughout three decades has achieved great achievements on the scales of compassion and solidarity among all members of the community and co-existence with various nationalities coming to UAE."

Dr. Moza Ghobash

President of the Arab Network for Women in Science and Technology (OWSD)

"In my homeland, we have become united with love and understanding, and these are the weapons, which we should wield to counter extremism and establish tolerance that means peace and stability."

Tolerance in the Global Thinking System

Nelson Mandela

South African anti-apartheid revolutionary political leader and South Africa's first black president

"Courageous people do not fear forgiving, for the sake of peace. Our human compassion binds us the one to the other - not in pity or patronizingly, but as human beings who have learnt how to turn our common suffering into hope for the future."

Mahatma Gandhi

Thinker, prominent politician and a spiritual leader of India during the Indian independence movement

The weak can never forgive; forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.

Ban Ki-moon

Former Secretary-General of the United Nations and Former South Korean Foreign Minister

Tolerance must be taught, nurtured and defended because societies are ever more diverse but intolerance is growing in many places. This calls for tolerance is a means of constructing peace.

George Eliot (Mary Anne Evans)

An English Novelist

The responsibility of tolerance lies in those who have the wider vision.

Jawaharlal Nehru

A key figure in India's Independence Movement, and India's first Prime Minister after independence

Only big hearts know how to be tolerant and forgive.


French Writer and Philosopher

I wholly disagree with what you say and will contend to the death for your right to say it.


French Writer and Philosopher

We have enough religion to hate and persecute, but not enough to love and support.


French Writer and Philosopher

Religion was instituted to make us happy in this life and in the other. What must we do to be happy in the life to come? Be just

Gustave Le Bon

French Doctor and Historian

Arabs were the first to show the world how to avoid any contradictions between freedom of thought and religious principles They endeavored to teach the world tolerance, which is the most invaluable human quality. This is why Muslim ethics in the early Muslim lands were far superior to those of all nations.

Karl Popper

An Austrian-English Philosopher, specialized in the philosophy of science

"If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them. We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant. We should claim that any movement preaching intolerance places itself outside the law, and we should consider incitement to intolerance and persecution as criminal, in the same way as we should consider incitement to murder, or to kidnapping, or to the revival of the slave trade, as criminal.

Irina Bokova

Bulgarian politician and the first woman to lead the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

Tolerance is a new idea, one that we need now more than ever. It leads us to respect cultural diversity, ways of life and expressions of our own humanity. It is a necessary condition for peace and progress for all people in a diversified and ever-more connected world.

Johann Goethe

Germany's best-known writer who had a profound impact on poetic, literary, and philosophical life

Tolerance should really only be a passing attitude: it should lead to appreciation. To tolerate is to offend.


Classical Greek philosopher and one of the founders of Western philosophy

And what kind of man am I? One of those who would gladly be refuted if anything I say is not true, and would gladly refute another who says what is not true, but would be no less happy to be refuted myself than to refute, for I consider that a greater benefit, inasmuch as it is a greater boon to be delivered from the worst of evils oneself than to deliver another

Gibran Khalil Gibran

Lebanese Poet, Writer and Painter

Be tolerate and do not fight evil in kind; those endowed with inner strength and spiritually strong are tolerant and forgiving.

Tayeb Salih

Sudanese writer and one of the most famous Arab writers, whom critics called "The genius of the modern Arabic novel"

My determination to address the concept of tolerance was not a creative writing-oriented decision. Rather, it was based on my personal decision to reconcile the deep-rooted traditions with modernity, hatred with love, and bring into harmony the two extremes towards the realization of development, openness, success and peace. I hope it is a courageous decision or at least right.

Mohammed Abed Al-Jabri

A Moroccan Philosopher and Thinker

Tolerance is the best antidote to extremism and the efficacious remedy for this epidemic, which has wreaked havoc far and wide, giving rise to many and diverse problems. The philosophy of tolerance must be adopted in order for us to heal.

Dr. Ibrahim Al-Faqi

Human Development and Neuro-Linguistic Programming Expert

In order to realize love and peace, in addition to savor the safety of coexistence, we must first attain the comprehensive tolerance that begets cooperation, giving, and peace.

Bill Gates

American Businessman and Programmer

Conflict, in all its kinds, is a bad teacher because it blurs the minds. Tolerance, on the other hand, should be the teacher from whom we learn and derive lessons because it inspires the minds. The difficulties, hindrances, and losses I have encountered throughout my life have taught me that tolerance is a vital and civilized solution.

John Paul II

The Pope

The shortest way to God is your other human being.

Desmond Tutu

Archbishop of Cape Town, South Africa, President of the Anglican Church, and Nobel Peace Prize laureate

Without tolerance, there can be no future. Tolerance means giving our countries and ourselves the opportunity to make a fresh start.

Francis Bacon

English Philosopher, Statesman, and Writer

The absence of tolerance in the world incurs imbalance in the social and global peace and its extreme version incurs civil and national religious wars that have been one of the fiercest wars in human history because intolerance is usually associated with the elimination of the other.

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