At the invitation of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Abu Dhabi, Her Majesty Queen Elizabth II and The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh arrive in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday 24 November to undertake their second State Visit to the UAE - the first having taken place in 1979. His Highness The Duke of York and Foreign Secretary William Hague MP are accompanying Her Majesty on this visit.
During the visit Her Majesty will attend the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and pay her respects at the tomb of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the UAE. It was the late Sheikh Zayed who hosted Her Majesty on her visit to the UAE in 1979.
Amongst a number of events Her Majesty will attend a ceremony commemorating the commencement of construction of the Zayed National Museum. This event will be the first time that the design of the Museum will be made public. The Museum itself will be built on Saadiyat Island, off the coast of Abu Dhabi.
The British Embassy will host an event to celebrate the special partnership between the UK and UAE. At the heart of the event will be a re-affirmation of the 1971 Treaty of Friendship between the UK and the UAE. The agreement will be signed by the Foreign Ministers of both countries. The event will also feature several performances, including the recital of poems by winners of a British Council poetry competition.
The primary ceremonial focus will take place at a lunch at Al Mushrif Palace, hosted in Her Majesty’s honour by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi. There will be a 21 gun salute and Guard of Honour, followed by a State banquet in the presence of the Senior Sheikhs and VIP guests from both the UK and UAE communities.
In the afternoon His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh will meet UAE alumni from a range of UK defence training institutions and will view a military fly-past of UK and UAE aircraft.
In addition to these key events, Her Majesty will have a Private Audience with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, during which they will discuss the importance of the bilateral relationship.
Her Majesty will also take time to conduct an investiture and present honours to Sir Maurice Flanagan KBE, Executive Vice Chairman of Emirates Airline Group and Dr Maha Barakat OBE, Head of the Imperial College London Diabetes Centre Abu Dhabi. Sir Maurice and Dr Barakat are receiving these for exceptional contributions they have made in the ir respective fields of aviation and health.
On the evening of Thursday 25 November, Her Majesty The Queen and The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh will fly on to Muscat, Oman.