Ambassador of France to the United Arab Emirates, Ludovic Pouille, has invited prominent personalities in the U.A.E. to celebrate the National Day of France. The event was held at the luxurious ballroom of Ritz Hotel – Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal on Saturday night, 14th of July 2018.
This important holiday celebration, most especially to the French people was attended by government leaders, heads of various international business councils, businessmen and important personalities from the civil society. Adgeco Group’s Chairman and Founder, Mohamed Dekkak attended the occasion together with Noeleen Saeed, President of the Irish Business Council Abu Dhabi as well as Mr. Bachir Belbachir Haskouri AB Consultant.
The significance of National Day of France
Similar to United States’ Independence Day, the National Day of France, recognized as Bastille Day is France’s national holiday that denotes the attack of the Bastille in the 1700s and is called La Fête Nationale Française.
During the eighteenth century, the country was in serious economic and political crisis, and the French people were disappointed with the administration under King Louis XVI’s rule, which ended up with high taxes and food shortages.
A symbol of cruelty and injustice in Paris, the Bastille which was an old prison and fortress held captured many political rebels. Then on July 14, 1789, a fuming crowd stormed the Bastille and freed the seven prisoners before taking the weapons stowed inside.
The attack was momentous for it proved to revolutionaries that the King had weak control over his armies and destabilized his power. The event spark of what later has been known as the French Revolution and the kingdom was ultimately dethroned.
King Louis and his wife Queen Marie Antoinette were detained and were executed together with other people who supported the royal family.
The Bastille and Eiffel Tower
The people of France celebrated the very first Bastille Day during the first anniversary of the storming, on the same site where the famous Eiffel Tower now stands. The iconic structure opened officially in 1889, precisely a hundred years after the storming of Bastille and was constructed to commemorate the 100th anniversary.
Celebrating Bastille Day
Bastille Day is being observed across France every 14th of July. Citizens are dancing in the streets and waving the country’s flag – a tradition practiced up to this day. A lot of people go to significant public events like parades, performances, and firework displays.
In 1880, a political leader named Benjamin Raspail proposed that July 14 should become a national holiday in France. Since then, the holiday has been held annually to remind today’s generation of the people who fought for freedom and justice in society.
France and U.A.E. Relations
On the occasion of National Day of France, a message of peace and congratulations was extended by H.H. Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the President of France, Emmanuel Marcon.
The French President was quoted saying about the status of culture in the cooperation relations between France and the UAE. President Marcon told the press during the Paris International Book Fair, that the culture occupies a significant place in the UAE-France relations. This statement was reiterated during his speech at the opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi. The French President believes in this high status of culture to build a good future together.
French-Emirati Cultural Dialogue
France and the U.A.E. have created a healthy relationship from the time the Federation in 1971 was established. Inspired by the vision of the late Sheikh Zayed, the country’s Founding father, the U.A.E. has continuously sought to foster the relationship grounded in trust and friendship. This national bond is developed by a privileged strategic partnership, solid economic connections, a close political and defense cooperation, and top initiatives in the fields of education and culture.
On the 8th of November 2017, the strong friendship among the government of France and the United Arab Emirates was reaffirmed on the occasion of the Louvre Abu Dhabi’s inauguration. The presence of both government leaders graced this huge event, Emmanuel Macron, the President of the French Republic, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum the Vice-President, Prime minister, Minister of Defense of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, as well as His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
A new cooperation agreement implementing the “French-Emirati Cultural Dialogue” was signed on November 9th, 2017, to be able to develop the range of exchanges and encounters, in France, and in the UAE throughout the whole country.
The excellent relationship between these two countries can very well be manifested and experience among the many cultural and tourist hotspots in the city. Led by the Louvre Abu Dhabi, the most significant artistic project promoted by France abroad and Arab world’s very first universal museum. There is the Emirati university Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi that offers French degrees to students from different nationalities, INSEAD and ESMOD, leading French establishments in the UAE, along with other French schools and universities which have collaborated with esteemed Emirati institutions, particularly in the fields of justice, medicine, and arts.