Embassy of the Dominican Republic in the United Arab Emirates
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Ambassador’s Speeches


Your Highness Sheik Nayhan bin Mubarak Al Nayhan,

Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development,

Your Excellency Humaid Al Qattami Minister of Education.

Your Excellencies

Fellow Dominicans

Distinguished guests

Welcome to the celebration of the National day of the Dominican Republic.

It is an honor and great privilege for the members of our embassy and for me to have you among us this evening, as we celebrate this important day in our Country’s history.
On February 27, 1844, 170 years ago, the Dominican Republic obtained its Independence after many years of being a Spanish colony and 22 years of Haitian occupation.
A great visionary and liberal thinker, Juan Pablo Duarte, was the main inspiration of the independence movement. In 1838, when he was only 25 years old, he created a secret society named “La Trinitaria”, design to undermine Haitian rule, to achieve independence and to create a self-sufficient nation established on the liberal ideals of a democratic government.
There were many brave and skillful members of “La Trinitaria”, but among them Ramon Matias Mella and Francisco del Rosario Sanchez stood out as the most prominent and are acknowledged today as the founding fathers of the nation, along with Duarte who is also considered the main architect of the Dominican Republic.
Duarte’s legacy still inspires the Dominican people to follow his example of honesty, determination and democracy.
Today, we are also celebrating the 5th Anniversary of opening our Embassy in the United Arab Emirates. During these 5 years, we have worked hard on strengthening the relations between the Dominican Republic and this nation, both of which I proudly and warmly call “home”.
I believe we have come a long way, a strong foundation has formed, upon which I trust that with the perseverance we are dedicating, perseverance we inherited from Juan Pablo Duarte, we will continue developing multiple layers of mutual interest, in culture, commerce, investments, energy and tourism.
Together we can grow from strength to strength along with the respect and warmth of this new, but quickly maturing friendship.
Allow me to tell you a few things about the Dominican Republic:
The country occupies the 9th largest economy in Latin America and the 2nd largest economy in the Caribbean and Central American region. Though long known for sugar production, the economy is now dominated by services. The country's economic progress is exemplified by its advanced telecommunication system, and transportation infrastructure.
The Dominican Republic is the most visited destination in the Caribbean. Our greatest treasure is the warmth and hospitality of our people that will make your journey a unique one. It would give us a great pleasure to know that you will visit us in a near future.
Ladies and gentleman, I would like to thank you once again for accompanying us this evening in the celebration of this important date.
As every year the Dominican Republic celebrates freedom and democracy with music, dance and a Carnival, we have organized for you a special Dominican night:
It is with great pride that I introduce an art exhibition of two very talented Dominican artists: Ines Tolentino and Soraya Abu Naba’a.

I am also honored to present the most talented saxophonist of the Dominican Republic, Sandy Gabriel who will be accompanying us with Dominican rhythms throughout the night.

And just in case that's not enough 'Dominican' for you ‎we also have a group of dancers to inspire you with our MERENGUE AND BACHATA melodies.

Throughout the night you will be able to enjoy the taste of our traditional food and try our best cigars.

I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank my friend Estelle Romeas for the wonderful catalogue she assembled for tonight’s art exhibition and my friend Mari Gamarra who has set it up so beautifully.
I would also like to thank all of my staff at the Dominican Embassy as well as the company Davidoff for their generous participation in this celebration and the Emirates Palace for being such gracious host tonight.
Thank you.

On the occasion of the celebration of “Our Hispanic Countries” organized by WIAD

On behalf of WIAD and myself, I would like to welcome you and thank you for accompanying us today in this activity titled "Our Hispanic Countries" when some of the Ibero Latino American countries have gathered efforts to bring to you their impressive cultural diversity.

America was home to many indigenous people, many of which had advanced civilizations such as the Aztecs, Inca and Maya until the Europeans primarily from Spain and Portugal arrived in America in the late 15th and early 16th century, bringing with them the Latin culture which included the Spanish language, the Catholic Religion, the food, and values and traditions, among others.

It is a great initiative of Mrs. Dodd to unite even more our countries in the United Arab Emirates by organizing this event. I believe it is important to establish a greater presence in this part of the world to reaffirm the bilateral relations between Ibero Latino America and the UAE and is a great opportunity to continue forging a mutual bridge of cooperation and exchange in the different fields such as tourism, culture and commerce.

Today, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Spain and Venezuela will present their National Dress, Arts and Crafts, a video, Music and Folkloric dance.

I hope that you will leave with a great experience from our countries and I wish that one day you will visit us if you didn't have the opportunity yet.

On the occasion of the 168th anniversary of the Dominican Republic’s Independence, February 27th, 2012.

On the occasion of the 168th Anniversary of the Independence of the Dominican Republic, the Dominican Embassy in the United Arab Emirates has the pleasure to present an exhibition of two national treasures formed through millions of years, amber and larimar.

To talk about these treasures, is to trace matters back in time through the mystical and magical history of our idyllic island.

In 1492, when Christopher Columbus departed from Spain on his first trip looking for a new trade route to Asia, he discovered instead something far more important, a new continent. In 1496, he founded the first European settlement in the Western Hemisphere in the Dominican Republic.

Columbus was received by the friendly and generous inhabitants, the taino Indians, who offered him a gift decorated with Dominican amber; coincidentally, in return he also presented to them a gift which consisted of a Baltic amber necklace in appreciation for their welcoming.

On that occasion, Amber played the first role to bring together two different cultures. Here, we could also say that a close link of cultures has existed since long time ago with the Middle East as the English word amber derives from the Arabic Anbar.

The history of Larimar has a more recent background. It began in the early twentieth century when a priest from the Dominican Republic informed the governmental authorities of the presence of a blue pectolite near the town where he lived. He was denied to explore the mine which remained forgotten until 1974. Larimar is only found in the Dominican Republic. The name "Larimar" was created by Miguel Mendez, the Dominican who rediscovered the mine and named it after his daughter Larissa, combining LARissa and MAR, the Spanish word for sea.

Amber and Larimar are “windows to the past” offering a different story to tell about the climate, the flora and the fauna from the prehistoric age of our country.

We Dominicans are very proud to own these two treasures that not only enrich our nature and commercial resources but that have also served on many occasions as the best Ambassadors of our nation, building very strong ties of friendship with other societies and cultures around the world.

It is an honor for all Dominicans that the United Arab Emirates receives this humble gift as a window to the wealth of our country.

On the occasion of the 167th anniversary of the Dominican Republic’s Independence, February 27th, 2011.

Your Royal Highnesses, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen

Dear friends,

I am delighted to welcome you today to the celebration of the 167th Anniversary of the Independence of our Country Dominican Republic and proud to present to you on this occasion, the renowned concert “Caribbean Gems,” conducted by the Music Director of our National Symphony Orchestra, José Antonio Molina.

This event is taking place under the prestigious Patronage of a great friend of our Country H.H. Sheikha Shamsa Bint Hamdan Bin Mohamed Al Nahyan. I wish to express to Her Highness my warm affection and my thanks for her genuine friendship. 

For the first time in the history of our music, “Dominican Symphonic Merengue” has crossed the barriers of distance and borders to be performed in the Middle East. José Antonio Molina is accompanied by 15 Dominican musicians and the National Symphony Orchestra of Syria.

Maestro Molina, also composer and pianist, has won major awards and recognitions both in the Dominican Republic and abroad.  He has performed on the most prestigious stages and has been the conductor for famous music stars such as Luciano Pavarotti, José Carreras, Marilyn Horne, Andrea Bocelli, Sting, Elton John, Steve Wonder, Gloria Stefan, Julio Iglesias, and José Feliciano.

José Antonio Molina is an inspirational performer who also dedicates his time and energy teaching and mentoring young musicians and is the Founder and President of the Latin –American Young Artist Foundation.

Tonight, you will enjoy some of the most representative compositions of Dominican Music, written by José Antonio Molina himself, Bienvenido Bustamante, Luis Rivera, Juan Lockward, Salvador Sturla, Manuel Sanchez Acosta, and Tono Abreu.

“Merengue” is a type of music and dance which origins can be traced back to the beginning of the 19th Century in the Dominican Republic among the rural communities in the north part of the island, specifically in the “Cibao” Valley. The oldest style of Dominican Merengue is named “Perico Ripiao” which literally means “Ripped Parrot,” perhaps comparing it to a similar action. 

We are dedicating the funds from this event to the people of our neighbor country, Haiti, who were devastated by the terrible earthquake of January 12, 2010. Haiti will receive our help through the Walkabout Foundation that has been providing relief since the very first days of the catastrophe.  

This concert is taking place thanks to the generous efforts of Abu Dhabi, Syria and the Dominican Republic. I am very grateful for the kind support of all our sponsors.

I wish to thank specially H.E. Mrs. Hoda Al Khamis-Kanoo, founder and driving force behind Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation for her support to bring together two distant countries with different cultures, through the universal language of music.

Today, we were very proud to receive 600 students from different schools of Abu Dhabi and Al Ain, attending the open rehearsal, among them students from the Higher Colleges of Technology of the Western Region, Medinat Zayed and Al Ruwais.

I would also like to add that tonight is a very special night because for the first time I am able to share with all of you, the beauty that I have come to know in the two countries that I proudly call my home: The United Arab Emirates and The Dominican Republic.

Through this event, I wish to inspire further interaction and collaboration between these two countries, for the benefit and happiness of all Emiratis and Dominicans.

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