In reference to the news article Food 'as vital an issue as oil': Geldof (April 29), I attended the Food Security Forum organised by Gulf Intelligence under the patronage and presence of Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak and featuring Bob Geldof as a special guest. The forum shed light on a fundamental issue of concern to the world at large.
Did you know that over a billion children go to bed on empty stomachs each and every night? The sheer scale of the problem was an eye opener for me.
Sheikh Nahyan and Mr Geldof highlighted to the audience that food insecurity could clearly lead to increased instability which could spread beyond local borders and potentially attain a global dimension. Hence, tackling the issue of food security should be a worldwide concern.
They both stressed the need for collective action to promote not only the use of scientific approaches to help farmers in poor areas of the world produce food that they and the rest of the world increasingly need, but to do so in a sustainable manner and within a social context to bring hope, opportunities and prosperity to the community at large.
For that, every country needs to do its part. I find it very refreshing that the UAE is acting in that spirit by taking a leadership position in raising the awareness needed to tackle a fundamental global issue.
Mohamed Sharara, Abu Dhabi
Biased wedding media coverage
Monaco's Prince Albert II will marry Charlene Wittstock in early July. Will The National be devoting as much space to that royal wedding as it has to this last one in Britain? If not, is it fair then to assume that The National is a British broadsheet?
The possibly future king and queen of Britain are not our royalty. Even labeling your coverage "The" royal wedding assumes a stance that excludes other royal weddings.
A week of coverage heading into the day, 12 pages of Arts and Life, and five pages on Saturday. Enough! A newspaper should reflect the community in which it is based. Expatriates are North American, Australian, South African, Russian, French, German, Thai, Indian, Indian, Pakistani and Filipino.
How hard can it be to cover the middle-class Indian and Pakistani communities of Abu Dhabi for example? Or the middle-class Iranian community in Dubai? Instead, we are treated to 12 pages of wedding nonsense. I have noticed over the course of reading this newspaper for three years that reference points are British and becoming increasingly so.
The sun has set on the British empire. Can we please wake up to a brand new day?
Marcel Petit, Abu Dhabi
Double standard on women's veils
I refer to a photo in the newspaper on April 28 entitled "Poll Sisters" depicting nuns of the Missionaries of Charity, the order founded by Mother Teresa, lined up to vote in Kolkata, India. I just want to show this picture to those who cry foul about Muslim women wearing the hijab and the niqab. Why are these Catholic nuns dressed modestly and covering their hair? Does Christianity proscribe the wearing of the hijab? All over the world, Catholic nuns are dressed like this. Can you find a picture of Mother Mary without her hair covered?
I fail to understand why present day Christians are so opposed to Muslim women covering their heads.
Shabir Zainudeen, Dubai
A dispute over cricket players
As much as I enjoyed watching a great talent like Paul Valthaty during a few matches this year (and also wondering where he was hiding all this while), the letter to the editor (Hailing a great cricket player, April 28) about Sachin Tendulkar being an "opportunistic run gatherer 95 per cent of the time" and Valthaty being "better than Virender Sehwag" is preposterous.
This is a 20-over type of tournament, not the international stage, for Pete's sake. Tendulkar and Sehwag are pillars of Indian cricket and the very good reasons why the Indian crowds pay to watch cricket matches day in and day out. Please do not diminish their skills and contribution to international cricket, leave alone the IPL.
As for Valthaty, I would love to see him opening with Sehwag for India in the near future.
Rohil Menon, Abu Dhabi
Widening use of force majeure
The business article Use of force is all in a good clause (April 26) reported that developers in the Gulf use force majeure to cover human failures as well as natural disasters. They do it because they know they can get away with it. This is the wild west of the property world. I wish I had invested in something less risky, like Greece's sovereign debt.
AW, Abu Dhabi