Luxury property is the best buy

I refer to Dubai homes prices flat this year (February 15). I am not sure you could really call most of the freehold homes in Dubai "luxury".

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - MAY 6:  General view of houses on the Palm Jumeirah as seen from the Palm Monorail, in Dubai on May 6, 2009.   (Randi Sokoloff / The National)  For Business/News/Stock *** Local Caption ***  RS005-050609-PALM.jpgBZ08SE GRPROPERTY 01.jpg
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I refer to Dubai homes prices flat this year (February 15). I am not sure you could really call most of the freehold homes in Dubai "luxury". The quality of finish in the boom was quite poor, and speculators might have been sold "luxury" but buyers got rather less. But the point about actual availability of certain types of property is valid - and this will be a key price differentiator. Real luxury might be a good buy and standard Dubai apartments less so - the reverse of accepted wisdom. Peter Cooper, Dubai

This is with reference to the report Hamas murder passports 'are fake' (February 17). Whether the alleged assassins and their accomplices are extradited to the UAE to stand trial for the murder of the Hamas leader Mahmoud al Mabhouh in a Dubai hotel on January 19 depends on the level of co-operation extended by the countries involved, but Dubai police and intelligence agencies deserve full praise for the brilliant investigative and detection work in solving the case.

One only had to read the article and look at the accompanying photos of the 11 suspects to appreciate the diligence and hard work exhibited by the authorities to first sift though and then collate the large volume of data like CCTV footage from multiple locations in a short span of time and then piece together the complete sequence of events. From the time of arrival of the 11 suspects in Dubai, their movements leading up to the assassination and their escape from the country after committing the crime, everything was vividly reconstructed to virtually nail the suspects. It would not be outside the realm of possibility that the police have some really incriminating evidence which for obvious reasons cannot be made public.

The UAE must surely be one of the few countries in the world with a near 100 per cent crime detection rate. For ordinary law-abiding citizens and residents, the message that goes out by such speedy investigations is that one cannot escape the long arm of the law in the UAE. You can run but you can't hide - be it for a minor traffic violation or a more serious crime. The only thing to top this would be if preventive policing and intelligence gathering could nip such crimes in the bud.  Amitabh Saxena, Dubai

The article Campaigners weigh in behind 'too fat to fly' movie man (February 17) described how the American film director Kevin Smith was thrown off a Southwest Airlines flight because he was too fat to properly fit in his seat. This is a very difficult issue for people of size. What has been missing from much of the discussion is the human element.

We can argue over health and economics, policy and politics, but the reality is in America and all over the world, there are millions of large people who wish to live productive lives in societies that condemn them based on their size. There are no easy answers and quick fixes, either for weight issues or accommodations. But while we are debating, it seems only logical that we support all of these people to be productive members of society - not ostracised and not prohibited from contributing. There is a destructive irony in these discussions: while arguing over whether people of size are a burden, we limit their contribution and productivity. That makes no sense, politically or economically. Whatever a person's size, it only makes sense to support active participation in all aspects of life, free from limiting prejudice. Rebecca Weinstein, US

In reference to the article Jailed photographer loses camera, too (February 18), I am shocked to find that the photographer taking a picture from Khalifa bridge will not have his camera returned. A term of imprisonment and a fine is enough, particularly when the police could dispose of all the photographs. I hope the authorities will think again, and put up appropriate warning signs.

It is a warning to all photographers, including me, that lurking in a photograph may be something disregarded as being of no importance to the subject but which may nevertheless get you into trouble. I know the authorities have major and ongoing security considerations but common sense is needed. Margaret Greenwood, Scotland

The article Light at the end of the tunnel? Not yet (February 18) reported that the first Salam Street tunnel is now open. But it seems our block (Al Falah and 10th streets) is completely blocked off. First, they reversed Bus Number 9, then no taxis came to this area and now this. What will happen in case of fire? Brigitte Peetz, Abu Dhabi