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As I saw it, school was to be a series of (sometimes slippery) stepping stones into the entrance hall of adulthood. It seemed pretty straightforward to me; you would attend for 13 grueling years and graduating would mark the finish line, somehow bringing meaning to everything from petty playground drama to sleepless nights spent brainstorming ways to get out of PE.  I imagined myself, clad in cap and gown, ready to embark on new adventures...

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With thousands of teeagers not returning to school or university, parents are being urged to have reassuring conversations with their “quaranteenager” to support their mental wellbeing.  The restrictions imposed to contain the spread of Covid-19 have felt especially tough for many teenagers. They have been deprived of their friends, they feel unsure about their exams and worried about job prospects in a post-pandemic economy. Without the normal routine and structure of school and college, teenagers...

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There’s no polite way to say this: residents of the UAE are a bunch of wasters. The country is sitting on an ever-growing mound of trash.  The UAE imports a whopping 80 to 90 percent of its food – and then throws away as much as a third of it, unused. The country ranks highly in plastic usage, using most of it just once.  The environment is in peril and so are we if we...

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After months of praying at home, the country’s residents are once more able to join their fellow worshippers in mosques, churches and temples as of July 1. Capacity will be limited to 30 percent, with three meters of space between each person.  Ablutions before praying should be performed at home, while face masks must be worn inside the mosque and worshippers should bring their own copy of the Quran and their own prayer mat, which...

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The majority of us have experienced tremendous changes to our lives due the spread of Covid-19 all over the world. We have been forced to lock ourselves in at home and to manage our lives with limited access to the outside world. After three months of this, the UAE is reducing restrictions on movement. But now many people are feeling anxious and distressed at the idea of going back to work and resuming their pre-Covid...

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As the UAE gradually returns to something resembling life pre-Covid-19, authorities have warned citizens and residents that this is not the time to let down their guard.  With the country still recording upwards of 300 new cases of Covid-19 daily, government spokesperson Amna Al Dahak Al Shamsi stressed that it was even more important to adhere to safety precautions. “With a gradual return to normality, the responsibility is now more on UAE citizens and residents to...

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The day that so many have been waiting for is here: gyms in Abu Dhabi are reopening. Abu Dhabi Sports Council on Sunday announced that all indoor sports centers were allowed to resume activities across the emirate from July 1.  They are allowed to operate around the clock, seven days a week but at no more than 40 percent capacity. They must also continue to stick to strict safety measures to prevent the spread of...

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An Emirati technology company has formed a partnership with a Chinese medical firm to develop and test a Coronavirus vaccine in the UAE.  Group 42 (G42) will carry out clinical trials under the supervision of Abu Dhabi’s Department of Health, Wam, the state news agency, announced this week. The partnership between G42 and China National Biotec Group was formally launched this week at ceremonies in Abu Dhabi, Beijing and Wuhan. Trials in the UAE mark...

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The diversity of the UAE has been the country’s greatest advantage in the fight against Covid-19, AbdulRahman Al Owais, the UAE’s Minister of Health and Prevention, told an international online summit this week.  All the different nationalities that make up the nation, said Al Owais, have come together to help manage the crisis. When asked how UAE has succeeded largely in containing the spread of the virus, the minister replied: “Two hundred different nationalities —...