UAE leaders congratulate Saudi Arabia on its first Founding Day

By royal decree, annual holiday will mark the founding of the kingdom

UAE president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan, attends the final session of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit in Kuwait City on December 15, 2009. Energy-rich states of the Gulf do not feel threatened by Iraq's plans to massively expand its oil production, Kuwait's foreign minister said. The GCC alliance is made up of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. AFP PHOTO/YASSER AL-ZAYYAT / AFP PHOTO / YASSER AL-ZAYYAT

Read More: What is Saudi Arabia's Founding Day and how is it different from National Day?

The UAE's leaders have congratulated Saudi Arabia on its first Founding Day.

The President, Sheikh Khalifa; Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai; and Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, congratulated King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the Saudi people on the day, state news agency Wam reported on Tuesday.

The kingdom announced last month that February 22 will be an annual holiday to mark the founding of the state.

The decree, issued by King Salman, said that the move commemorates the history of the state that goes back hundreds of years.

The day is separate from Saudi National Day, which is marked on September 22.

The move is “out of pride in the well-established roots of this state and the close connection of its citizens with its leaders since the era of Imam Muhammad bin Saud three centuries ago”, the decree said.

Writing on Twitter, Sheikh Mohamed congratulated King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the Saudi people on the day.

"Congratulations to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the Saudi people on the historic occasion of the inaugural Founding Day," Sheikh Mohamed said on Twitter.

Saudi Arabia’s new annual holiday commemorates the ascendancy to power of Mohammed bin Saud, who founded the First Saudi State.

In February 1727, bin Saud inherited leadership over the central Arabian town of Diriyah, which had been established by his ancestors back in the 15th century.

Founding Day activities will include traditional art and exhibitions of early photos to bring an audience of modern Saudis closer to their heritage and customs.

Updated: February 22, 2022, 5:59 PM