In a passionate plea made on Tuesday, at the launch of ‘Salam Beirut’, emergency aid and relief campaign from Sharjah, Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of the Ruler of Sharjah, and Chairperson of TBHF and Eminent Advocate for Refugee Children at United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR had called upon individuals and organisations in the UAE and around the world to stand in solidarity with Lebanon and to extend their moral and humanitarian support to the victims of the Beirut port blast.
A total of Dh30,741,000 was pledged on the show with Sharjah Islamic Bank donating Dh6 million; while Bank of Sharjah, Humaid Jaafar, and an anonymous philanthropist donated Dh5 million each.
His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, called on Arab countries to stand up and support the Lebanese people in their ordeal so they are not left out as other countries were, pointing out that Arabs can heal their wounds with their own hands and that Lebanon was and is still part of the Arab world and not absent from it.
“I thank Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Chairperson of The Big Heart Foundation and Eminent Advocate for Refugee Children at UNHCR, for her leading efforts in garnering overwhelming support for our brothers and sisters in Lebanon. I pay tribute to the precious lives lost to this tragedy and wish those who were hurt a speedy recovery,” Sheikh Sultan continued.
“We thank everyone who has come forward to help Lebanon cope with this unprecedented tragedy through their good deeds and words. This is the time to stand with the Lebanese people, not the time to meddle with politics or past issues. We will be there until you get back on your feet. We are with all those who are calling for reform to end the turmoil in Lebanon,” the Sharjah Ruler added.
“Lebanon, the land of culture and giving, the nation that was once home to all Arabs and has given us numerous poets and artists, is not unknown to anyone,” he said.
“We are rooting for you Lebanon. We will never abandon you,” Sheikh Sultan Al Qasimi asserted.
The Ruler of Sharjah concluded his address with the message: “I hope whoever hears my words will support, even if it is with words. We need to feel that we can heal each other’s wounds, support each other. I wish all of you success until we meet at the celebration that will mark Lebanon’s freedom. That day will come.”
Following the launch of the ‘Salam Beirut’ campaign, Sharjah Broadcasting Authority (SBA) announced the unification of broadcasting on all its channels and radio stations on Wednesday through the live The Direct Line (Al Khat Al Mubasher) show in support of the efforts to help those affected by the disaster. Accordingly, this popular platform devoted its broadcast hours from 1.30 pm to 3pm, exclusively to raise funds for this noble initiative.
Renowned personalities and leaders of the Arab world came on air expressing their grief at the disaster and urged their fellow compatriots to lend a helping hand to the ‘Salam Beirut’ campaign, prompting an outpouring of compassion as people phoned in or texted to donate their contributions.