ABU DHABI, 17th November, 2016 (WAM) — Yesterday marked International Day for Tolerance. For two decades, the world has come together on one day in November to celebrate tolerance, unite and fight intolerance as a global community. This country has led regional efforts in the promotion of tolerance through the creation of a Ministry of Tolerance and the appointment of a Minister of State for Tolerance, said The National in an editorial on Wednesday. As Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, said, ‘What makes us proud is not the height of our buildings, but rather the openness and tolerance of our nation.’ In a region suffering from years of war and conflict, we have created a nation based on the principle of tolerance. As the region simmers with religious conflict, we have invested in building churches, temples and other places of worship for all faiths. We have also taken a leading role in fighting intolerant forces such as Daesh. The Sawab Centre in Abu Dhabi was established in collaboration with the United States to combat Daesh’s online propaganda and debunk nefarious narratives of intolerance pushed by extremists. The Government has appointed a Minister of State for Tolerance, Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, who is working on implementing a National Programme for Tolerance to promote coexistence and enhance peace and security in the region in collaboration with local and international entities. The programme recognises not just government’s role as an incubator of tolerance but also the role of family and research and education institutions in tackling the roots of intolerant ideas. As The National reported yesterday, the Emirates Association for Human Rights is also calling on other countries to adopt similar laws rejecting intolerance, hatred, terrorism and violence. We know that intolerance thrives on social media and uses anonymity to spread hate. By contrast, our leadership is transparent about the proud foundations of this country and our efforts to spread coexistence throughout the region. Our leaders regularly convey such messages on social media.The editorial concludes, The fight against intolerance is a long and complex one. Next year will be the ‘Year of Tolerance’, another sign that our efforts will continue and expand. Given recent events around the world and the continuing conflicts that surround us, it is clear that the international community will need more tolerance, not less, going forward.