‘We have a duty to protect this country,’ Sultan says (Gulf News, 02/08/2012)

The recent arrest of several Islamists in the UAE is not a security crackdown but a limited measure to advise and help those who “deviated” and attempted to harm their country, His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, said on Thursday.
“We have a duty to protect this country through advice, and when a son commits a mistake, you advise him,” Dr Shaikh Sultan said in a phone-in radio interview on Sharjah Radio and TV.
“If the state has taken measures, it is out of interest to protect those sons. Even those who are in jail — they are dear to us. Hence, every mother whose son was arrested, she should excuse me personally.
“I say let us treat the matter. We are not causing him harm but we are dealing with the matter because the person committed a mistake.
“And hopefully they will become good people in the future,” Shaikh Sultan said.
The comments are in relation to recent arrests and investigation of a number of Islamists by UAE authorities, as well as the recent declaration by some Islamists that they are establishing party as a Muslim Brotherhood in violation of the country’s laws and constitution.
“These people were held at airports, or at border crossings with Oman or Qatar. Where were they going? They were running away to establish an outside organisation.
“We again call on them with advice that this is your country; do not harm it because it is one of the purist experiments in unity. Hopefully by Eid, all matters will be resolved as this is a treatment and not punishment,” Shaikh Sultan said.
Dr Anwar Mohammad Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs on Wednesday also voiced similar sentiments.
He said on his Twitter account: “No to trans-border allegiances. It is obvious that we are facing a group whose partisan allegiance overcame their national allegiance. And the declaration of the recent party is a call for incitement and the targeting the nation.”

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