The leaders of the UAE paid tributes to the nation's martyrs on Commemoration Day.
President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan said martyrdom is the highest degree of devotion and dedication to the homeland, and only great nations are built through sacrifice and sincere belonging.
In the following statement on the Commemoration Day to the Nation Shield magazine, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa said: "On this glorious day, when we exalt the values of giving and sacrifice, we express the utmost appreciation to our righteous martyrs who have given their blood and souls in fulfilment of the sacred duty, in support of the oppressed, in defence of the truth, and in the protection of the UAE, which was founded by our fathers on the values of giving, redemption, belonging, loyalty and courage.
"The biography of the martyrs of the homeland, whose processions have progressed throughout history, will remain immortal in our conscience, and the medals of honour and pride we take. This biography is embodied by the society in its cohesion, and the State is committed to caring for and honouring the children of the martyrs and their families. Martyrdom is the highest degree of devotion and dedication to the homeland, and great nations are built through sacrifice and sincere belonging.
"On this blessed day, we pay tribute to our valiant sons, soldiers, officers and commanders of our armed forces, who are vigilant in protecting and defending the homeland, and saluting our children across all workplaces inside and outside the country.
"We pray to God that our martyrs may rest in His mercy and that they achieve the highest paradise because they believed in what God and the homeland had promised. We ask God Almighty to reward their children and their families for their certainty, their composure, patriotism and their patience, and we call on him to preserve our country, and to perpetuate the blessings of our state's security and safety.
"Peace, mercy, and the blessings of God be upon you."
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, also shared sincere feelings of gratitude to the families of the martyrs.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, said those who sacrificed their souls in protection of the homeland shoulder all Emiratis with a solemn responsibility towards nation-building and towards keeping the national flag flying high at all times.
Rulers of the other emirates also paid their tributes.