Dubai – MENA Herald: Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, Chairman, Al Habtoor Group welcomed Professor Elie A. Salem, Lebanon’s former Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the University of Balamand at the Al Habtoor Group head office on Al Wasl Road on Thursday 17 March 2016. Professor Salem was accompanied by Michel Najjar, Vice President, University of Balamand and Dr. Nada Mourtada-Sabbah, Secretary General of the University Leadership Consortium in the UAE; Also present was Mohammed Al Habtoor, Vice-Chairman & CEO, Al Habtoor Group; Ziad Ida, Director Community Relations & Safety, Al Habtoor Group, Abdul Salam Marzooqi, General Manager, Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor Foundation and Joanna Andrews, Director of Communications; Al Habtoor Group.
They talked about the current political situation in Lebanon. Al Habtoor said he fears for Lebanon’s future under the influence of Iran. Al Habtoor first met Professor Salem when he was Minister of Foreign Affairs in Lebanon.
The talks focused on several educational initiatives and potential collaboration between the Al Habtoor Group Chairman and the University of Balamand, a non-profit higher education institution.
The Lebanese university has set up a first-of-its-kind university campus in Dubai at Dubai Investments Park (DIP). Professor Salem invited the Chairman to attend a graduation ceremony on Friday for some 500 graduating students.
Al Habtoor praised the work they are doing in the educational sector in both Lebanon and Dubai. “A higher education is the best gift anyone can have,” he said. “Dubai provides a stable and safe environment for people to live, work and study. Having a presence of respectable universities here, like the University of Balamand, offers potential students so much choice.”
The delegation also informed the Chairman about The Sheikh Nahyan Center for Arabic Studies and Intercultural Dialogue, a cultural centre currently under construction at the University of Balamand in Lebanon. The centre will focus on promoting cultural dialogue.