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Dubai Student Triumphs as UAE Winner of Arab Reading Challenge

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On Tuesday, Ahmad Faisal Ali, a Grade 9 pupil at Zayed Education Complex in Al Barsha, Dubai, was honored as the UAE's top young reader in the Arab Reading Challenge. Competing against 700,000 peers, Ahmad emerged victorious at the ceremony held at Dubai World Trade Centre. He now advances to represent the Emirates in the global finals of the eighth annual event, which has drawn a record 28.2 million participants from 50 countries.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, celebrated the massive participation in the Arab Reading Challenge, particularly commending the dedication of 700,000 UAE students who undertook the challenge of reading 50 books throughout the academic year. "Congratulations to today's winners," Sheikh Mohammed expressed. "Their achievements fill me with optimism for the Emirati youth, showcasing their commitment to reading and knowledge acquisition."

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The Vice President expressed confidence that these young individuals, proud of their heritage, will possess the understanding and skills to appreciate diverse global cultures while contributing significantly to the UAE's future.

At the awards ceremony, Asem Abbara from Abu Dhabi was recognized as the Outstanding Supervisor, while Sulaiman Khamis Sulaiman Al Khadim from Zayed Education Complex in Dibba Al Fujairah topped the People of Determination category, which acknowledged the achievements of disabled students. Al Ebdaa Model School – Cycle 1 in Dubai was named the Outstanding School.

The event was attended by key dignitaries including Ahmad Al Falasi, Minister of Education; Sarah Al Amiri, Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology; Sheikh Salem bin Khalid Al Qassimi, Minister of Culture; Maryam Al Hammadi, Minister of State and Secretary General of the UAE Cabinet; and Saeed Mohammad Al Eter, Assistant Secretary General of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives.

The Arab Reading Challenge, launched by Sheikh Mohammed in 2015, aims to encourage one million young people to read at least 50 books annually. The winner is chosen based on their ability to articulate general knowledge, critical thinking, communication skills, and the diversity of books they engage with.

Last year, Emirati teenager Amnah Al Mansoori and Qatari schoolboy Abdullah Al Berri made history as the first joint winners of the Arab Reading Challenge, sharing the Dh1 million ($270,000) prize after an international competition involving 24.8 million participants.

July 3, 2024 2:40 p.m. 456

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