Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Overview
Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 محمد بن راشد آل مكتوم; ), also Sheikh Mohammed, (born July 22, 1949), is the Prime Minister and Vice President of the United Arab Emirates
United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates, abbreviated as the UAE, or shortened to "the Emirates", is a state situated in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia on the Persian Gulf, bordering Oman, and Saudi Arabia, and sharing sea borders with Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Iran.The UAE is a...

 (UAE), and absolute monarch of Dubai
Dubai
Dubai is a city and emirate in the United Arab Emirates . The emirate is located south of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula and has the largest population with the second-largest land territory by area of all the emirates, after Abu Dhabi...

.

He is the third of Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum
Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum
HH The Emir Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum was the Vice-President and Prime Minister of United Arab Emirates and Emir of Dubai...

's four sons (members of Dubai's ruling family Al Maktoum
Al Maktoum
Al Maktoum is the family name of the ruling dynasty of the emirate of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The Al Maktoum family is a branch of the Bani Yas tribe , a powerful bedouin clan from the interior...

 and descendants of the House of Al-Falasi
House of Al-Falasi
The Al Maktoum family descends from the Al Bu Falasah section of the Bani Yas, a highly respected and authoritative tribal federation that has been the dominant power throughout most of what is now the United Arab Emirates....

, of which he is the tribal leader).
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Encyclopedia
Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 محمد بن راشد آل مكتوم; ), also Sheikh Mohammed, (born July 22, 1949), is the Prime Minister and Vice President of the United Arab Emirates
United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates, abbreviated as the UAE, or shortened to "the Emirates", is a state situated in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia on the Persian Gulf, bordering Oman, and Saudi Arabia, and sharing sea borders with Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Iran.The UAE is a...

 (UAE), and absolute monarch of Dubai
Dubai
Dubai is a city and emirate in the United Arab Emirates . The emirate is located south of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula and has the largest population with the second-largest land territory by area of all the emirates, after Abu Dhabi...

.

Personal life and education


He is the third of Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum
Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum
HH The Emir Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum was the Vice-President and Prime Minister of United Arab Emirates and Emir of Dubai...

's four sons (members of Dubai's ruling family Al Maktoum
Al Maktoum
Al Maktoum is the family name of the ruling dynasty of the emirate of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The Al Maktoum family is a branch of the Bani Yas tribe , a powerful bedouin clan from the interior...

 and descendants of the House of Al-Falasi
House of Al-Falasi
The Al Maktoum family descends from the Al Bu Falasah section of the Bani Yas, a highly respected and authoritative tribal federation that has been the dominant power throughout most of what is now the United Arab Emirates....

, of which he is the tribal leader). From the age of four, Sheikh Mohammed was privately tutored in Arabic and Islamic Studies
Islamic studies
In a Muslim context, Islamic studies can be an umbrella term for all virtually all of academia, both originally researched and as defined by the Islamization of knowledge...

. In 1955, he began his formal education at Al Ahmedia School. At the age of 10, he moved to Al Shaab School, and two years later, he went to Dubai Secondary School. In 1966, he and his cousin, Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al-Maktoum
Mohammed bin Khalifa Al-Maktoum
HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa bin Saeed Al Maktoum is a United Arab Emirati politician and royalty of Dubai.Sheikh Mohammed is the first cousin of the current ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and the head of the Dubai Land Department, the land registrar of the Emirate of...

, attended the Bell Educational Trust
Bell Educational Trust
The Bell Educational Trust is an educational institution, that grew from the original EFL school, Bell International College, Cambridge, founded by Frank Bell in 1955. The Bell Educational Trust subsequently expanded outside Cambridge, with a number of partner schools, located in the UK and...

's English Language School in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

.

His senior wife is Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum whom he married in 1979. His best-known junior wife is HRH Princess Haya bint Al Hussein, daughter of King Hussein of Jordan
Hussein of Jordan
Hussein bin Talal was the third King of Jordan from the abdication of his father, King Talal, in 1952, until his death. Hussein's rule extended through the Cold War and four decades of Arab-Israeli conflict...

 and half-sister of current King Abdullah II of Jordan
Abdullah II of Jordan
Abdullah II ibn al-Hussein is the reigning King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. He ascended the throne on 7 February 1999 after the death of his father King Hussein. King Abdullah, whose mother is Princess Muna al-Hussein, is a member of the Hashemite family...

, whom he married on April 10, 2004, and with whom he has one child, a daughter, AlJalila, born December 2, 2007. Sheikh Mohammed has 21 officially acknowledged children: eight sons and thirteen daughters.

Al Maktoum, his sons, and his daughters are known to be avid enthusiasts of traditional Arabic poems and arts, and take part in projects to aid developing countries such as Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

, Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

, the Palestinian Authority and Yemen
Yemen
The Republic of Yemen , commonly known as Yemen , is a country located in the Middle East, occupying the southwestern to southern end of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the north, the Red Sea to the west, and Oman to the east....

. He writes poetry in Nabati (colloquial Arabic.) They are also sport enthusiasts, especially in horse
Horse racing
Horse racing is an equestrian sport that has a long history. Archaeological records indicate that horse racing occurred in ancient Babylon, Syria, and Egypt. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC...

 and camel racing
Camel racing
Camel racing is a popular sport in India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, Jordan, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Australia, and Mongolia. Professional camel racing, like horse racing, is an event for betting and tourist attraction...

. For example, in the 15th Asian Games in 2006
Equestrian at the 2006 Asian Games
Equestrian and Equestrian Endurance were contested at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar. Equestrian was contested from December 4 to December 12. In this sport, men and women compete side by side, against one another. Equestrian Endurance was contested on December 14...

, his son Rashid
Rashid bin Mohammed Al Maktoum
Sheikh Rashid bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is the eldest son of UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum.Concerning the order among his brothers and sisters he is the elder of...

 took the individual gold in Endurance
Endurance riding
Endurance riding is an equestrian sport based on controlled long-distance races. It is one of the international competitions recognized by the FEI. There are endurance rides worldwide....

, his sons Rashid, Ahmed, Majid, and Hamdan
Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum also known as Fazza' ;the name under which he publishes his poetry, is the Hereditary Prince of Dubai and the second eldest son of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum.-Education:Sheikh Hamdan began his schooling...

 took the team gold in Endurance
Endurance riding
Endurance riding is an equestrian sport based on controlled long-distance races. It is one of the international competitions recognized by the FEI. There are endurance rides worldwide....

, his niece Latifa took a bronze in Show Jumping
Show jumping
Show jumping, also known as "stadium jumping," "open jumping," or "jumpers," is a member of a family of English riding equestrian events that also includes dressage, eventing, hunters, and equitation. Jumping classes commonly are seen at horse shows throughout the world, including the Olympics...

, and his daughter Maitha led the UAE team in taekwondo
Taekwondo
Taekwondo is a Korean martial art and the national sport of South Korea. In Korean, tae means "to strike or break with foot"; kwon means "to strike or break with fist"; and do means "way", "method", or "path"...

 .

Thoroughbred horse racing



Sheikh Mohammed is a major figure in international thoroughbred
Thoroughbred
The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed...

 horse racing
Horse racing
Horse racing is an equestrian sport that has a long history. Archaeological records indicate that horse racing occurred in ancient Babylon, Syria, and Egypt. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC...

 and breeding
Horse breeding
Horse breeding is reproduction in horses, and particularly the human-directed process of selective breeding of animals, particularly purebred horses of a given breed. Planned matings can be used to produce specifically desired characteristics in domesticated horses...

. In late 1981, he purchased Gainsborough Stud at Woolton Hill
Woolton Hill
Woolton Hill is a village in Hampshire, England, within the civil parish of East Woodhay.The village is situated approximately south-west of Newbury and encompasses the smaller hamlet of Broad Layings within its Northern borders...

, near Newbury
Newbury, Berkshire
Newbury is a civil parish and the principal town in the west of the county of Berkshire in England. It is situated on the River Kennet and the Kennet and Avon Canal, and has a town centre containing many 17th century buildings. Newbury is best known for its racecourse and the adjoining former USAF...

, Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire is a historic county in the South of England. It is also often referred to as the Royal County of Berkshire because of the presence of the royal residence of Windsor Castle in the county; this usage, which dates to the 19th century at least, was recognised by the Queen in 1957, and...

, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

. He owns Ballysheehan Stud in County Tipperary
County Tipperary
County Tipperary is a county of Ireland. It is located in the province of Munster and is named after the town of Tipperary. The area of the county does not have a single local authority; local government is split between two authorities. In North Tipperary, part of the Mid-West Region, local...

, Ireland. He also owns Gainsborough Farms Inc in Versailles, Kentucky
Versailles, Kentucky
As of the census of 2000, there were 7,511 people, 3,160 households, and 2,110 families residing in the city. The population density was . There were 3,330 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the city was 88.18% White, 8.67% African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.35%...

, United States. His racing operations includes the ownership of Darley Stables and he is the leading partner in his family's Godolphin Stables
Godolphin Stables
Godolphin Racing is the Maktoum family's private thoroughbred horseracing stable and was named in honour of the Godolphin Arabian, who came from the desert to become one of the three founding stallions of the modern thoroughbred....

. Sheikh Mohammed hosts the Dubai World Cup
Dubai World Cup
The Dubai World Cup is a Thoroughbred horse race held annually since 1996 and from 2010 at the Meydan Racecourse in the city of Dubai, United Arab Emirates...

, the world's richest series of horse races.

In the UK, his horses have won numerous important Group One
Group One
Group One or Group 1 is the term used for the highest level of Thoroughbred and Standardbred stakes races in many countries. Group One races may be run under handicap conditions in Australia but in Europe weight-for-age conditions always apply. Races may be also restricted to age groups or a...

 races including several of the British Classic Races. His horses have also won the Irish Derby Stakes
Irish Derby Stakes
The Irish Derby is a Group 1 flat horse race in Ireland open to three-year-old thoroughbred colts and fillies. It is run at the Curragh over a distance of 1 mile and 4 furlongs , and it is scheduled to take place each year in late June or early July.It is Ireland's equivalent of the Epsom Derby,...

 and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe
Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe
The Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe is a Group 1 flat horse race in France which is open to thoroughbreds aged three years or older. It is run at Longchamp over a distance of 2,400 metres , and it is scheduled to take place each year, usually on the first Sunday in October.Popularly referred to as the...

 and in the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 the 2006 Preakness Stakes
Preakness Stakes
The Preakness Stakes is an American flat Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-olds held on the third Saturday in May each year at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a Grade I race run over a distance of 9.5 furlongs on dirt. Colts and geldings carry 126 pounds ; fillies 121 lb...

 with Bernardini
Bernardini
Bernardini is a thoroughbred race horse foaled on March 23, 2003 at Darley Stable in Kentucky. A son of A.P. Indy, he is out of Cara Rafaela who won almost a million dollars over the course of her racing career...

.

In 2008, he bought the Woodlands Stud empire for more than more than $460 million.

Political and business career


On January 3, 1995, Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum , also referred to as Sheikh Maktoum was the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and the emir of Dubai.-Biography:...

 signed two decrees that appointed Sheikh Mohammed as Crown Prince
Crown Prince
A crown prince or crown princess is the heir or heiress apparent to the throne in a royal or imperial monarchy. The wife of a crown prince is also titled crown princess....

 of Dubai.

Sheikh Mohammed oversaw the development of numerous projects in Dubai including the creation of the Palm Islands
Palm Islands
The Palm Islands are an artificial archipelago in Dubai, United Arab Emirates on which major commercial and residential infrastructures will be constructed...

 and the luxury Burj Al Arab hotel. He also promoted the construction of Burj Khalifa, which is now the tallest free-standing structure in the world, world's tallest building; its official opening was on Monday, 4 January 2010. During his tenure as Crown Prince he set up Dubai Holding
Dubai Holding
Dubai Holding is a holding company that belongs to the Government of Dubai . It manages and controls 20 companies, which operate in real estate, hospitality, finance, healthcare, energy, research, education, entertainment, media, internet, tourism and biotechnology...

, the debt laden and financially troubled holding company with multi-diversified businesses and investments. He currently owns 99.67% of the company.

After roughly a decade of de facto rulership, he became the Ruler of Dubai on January 4, 2006 upon the death of his elder brother Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He was also nominated by the President of the UAE, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, to be the next Prime Minister and Vice President of the UAE on January 5, 2006. The members of the UAE Federal National Council
Federal National Council
The Federal National Council , is the federal authority of the United Arab Emirates formed to represent the general emirati people. The FNC consist of 40 members with advisory tasks in the house of legislative council...

 accepted the President's nomination shortly after.

Charity


Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has been known for his vast charitable
Charity (practice)
The practice of charity means the voluntary giving of help to those in need who are not related to the giver.- Etymology :The word "charity" entered the English language through the Old French word "charité" which was derived from the Latin "caritas".Originally in Latin the word caritas meant...

 donation
Donation
A donation is a gift given by physical or legal persons, typically for charitable purposes and/or to benefit a cause. A donation may take various forms, including cash, services, new or used goods including clothing, toys, food, and vehicles...

s. On May 19, 2007, he announced plans to give $US100m to set up the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation, an educational foundation in the Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

, one of the largest charitable donations in history. Sheikh Mohammed stated that the money is meant to bridge the knowledge gap between the Arab region and the developed world, improving the standard of education and research in the region, developing leadership programs for youth, and stimulating job creation. The announcement was made at the 2007 World Economic Forum
World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum is a Swiss non-profit foundation, based in Cologny, Geneva, best known for its annual meeting in Davos, a mountain resort in Graubünden, in the eastern Alps region of Switzerland....

 in Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

.

One of the Foundation's key initiatives is Bayt Ul Hikma۔

Dubai Cares


In September 2007, he launched the Dubai Cares
Dubai Cares
Dubai Cares is a humanitarian initiative that seeks to provide children in developing countries with access to quality primary education. It was launched in September 2007 by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of United Arab Emirates, and the Ruler of...

 campaign to raise money to educate 1 million children in poor countries. The campaign is Dubai's contribution to the U.N. Millennium Development Goals for providing Children's Primary Education to every child by 2015. The amount donated to this campaign has exceeded AED 1.65 billion (Approximately US$ 450 million).

Noor Dubai


On September 3, 2008, Sheikh Mohammad also launched a new Ramadan
Ramadan
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, which lasts 29 or 30 days. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex during daylight hours and is intended to teach Muslims about patience, spirituality, humility and...

 initiative under the name "Noor Dubai", aiming to help the World Health Organization
World Health Organization
The World Health Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations that acts as a coordinating authority on international public health. Established on 7 April 1948, with headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, the agency inherited the mandate and resources of its predecessor, the Health...

 (WHO) and International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness
International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness
The International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness is a coordinating, umbrella organization to lead an international effort in mobilizing resources for blindness prevention activities. It was set up on January 1, 1975, by the late Sir John Wilson, the Founder President...

 (IAPB) in achieving its goals outlined in VISION 2020: the Right to Sight. Noor Dubai will treat and provide health services to one million people suffering from treatable blindness and visual impairment in developing countries on a local, regional, and international scale.

Controversies



In 2000, the Sheikh funded 4 million euro for the construction of the Essalaam mosque in Rotterdam
Rotterdam
Rotterdam is the second-largest city in the Netherlands and one of the largest ports in the world. Starting as a dam on the Rotte river, Rotterdam has grown into a major international commercial centre...

, The Netherlands, which led to a major controversy.

Since 2000, international equestrian athletes affiliated with UNICEF have worked to end the "scourge of modern slavery in mounted sports," by putting public and diplomatic pressure on Sheikh Mohammed and the UAE government.
In 2005, a UNICEF-sponsored programme with the UAE government resulted in the repatriation of hundreds of children formerly enslaved as camel jockeys, and provided them with social services and compensation upon return to their home countries of Pakistan, Sudan, Mauritania, and Bangladesh. The UAE government set aside $US2.7 million in initial funding in 2005 with an additional $US9 million for the second phase, and to enforce compliance, adopted a law officially banning the practice with penalties of jail time and a $US27,200 fine. UNICEF endorsed the UAE’s efforts and expressed the hopes that “the UAE’s programme will serve as a model to other countries in the region, as a means of ending all forms of exploitation of children”.

In September 2006, Sheikh Mohammed was accused of encouraging the abduction and enslavement of thousands of boys for use as jockeys in camel races
Camel racing
Camel racing is a popular sport in India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, Jordan, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Australia, and Mongolia. Professional camel racing, like horse racing, is an event for betting and tourist attraction...

. A class-action suit was filed against him in the state of Florida
Florida
Florida is a state in the southeastern United States, located on the nation's Atlantic and Gulf coasts. It is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the north by Alabama and Georgia and to the east by the Atlantic Ocean. With a population of 18,801,310 as measured by the 2010 census, it...

. However, in 2006, American lawyers representing the UAE raised a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, not on its substance but on the grounds that none of the involved parties resided in the U.S. In July 2007, judge Cecilia Altonaga
Cecilia Altonaga
Cecilia Maria Altonaga is a Florida United States district court judge. She is the first Cuban-American woman to be appointed as a federal judge in the United States.-Biography:...

 accepted the motion and dismissed the suit.

On 9 March 2007, the London-based Metro
Metro (Associated Metro Limited)
Metro is a free daily newspaper in the United Kingdom published by Associated Newspapers Ltd . It is available from Monday to Friday each week on many public transport services across the United Kingdom.-History:The paper was launched in London in 1999, and can now be found in 14 UK urban centres...

 newspaper wrongly published a picture of Sheikh Mohammed, attributing it to the terror suspect Khalid Shaikh Mohammed
Khalid Shaikh Mohammed
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is a Kuwait-born militant in U.S. custody in Guantánamo Bay for alleged acts of terrorism, including mass murder of civilians....

. The Metro has since apologized for the error.

External links



Further reading

  • My Vision - Challenges in the Race for Excellence
    My Vision - Challenges in the Race for Excellence
    My Vision — Challenges in the Race for Excellence is a book co-authored by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ruler of Dubai and Vice-President of the United Arab Emirates, and Adel Bishtawi, Palestinian biographer and author...

    by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (2006); in Arabic; explains the vision of Sheikh Mohammed for Dubai
  • Dubai The Maktoum Story by John M. Smith; in English; a book which criticizes the governance of Sheikh Mohammed