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You Are Here: Locations > United Arab Emirates > Government

United Arab Emirates

GOVERNMENT
Country Name:
  conventional long form: United Arab Emirates conventional short form: none
local long form: Al Imarat al Arabiyah al Muttahidah local short form: none
former: Trucial States
abbreviation: UAE
Government Type:
  federation with specified powers delegated to the UAE federal government and other powers reserved to member emirates
Capital:
  Abu Dhabi
Administrative Divisions:
  7 emirates (imarat, singularóimarah); Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi), 'Ajman, Al Fujayrah, Ash Shariqah (Sharjah), Dubayy (Dubai), Ra's al Khaymah, Umm al Qaywayn
Independence:
  2 December 1971 (from UK)
National Holiday:
  National Day, 2 December (1971)
Constitution:
  2 December 1971 (made permanent in 1996)
Legal System :
  federal court system introduced in 1971; all emirates except Dubayy (Dubai) and Ra's al Khaymah have joined the federal system; all emirates have secular and Islamic law for civil, criminal, and high courts
Suffrage:
  none
Executive Branch:
  chief of state: President ZAYID bin Sultan Al Nuhayyan (since 2 December 1971), ruler of Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi) (since 6 August 1966) and Vice President MAKTUM bin Rashid al-Maktum (since 8 October 1990), ruler of Dubayy (Dubai)
head of government: Prime Minister MAKTUM bin Rashid al-Maktum (since 8 October 1990), ruler of Dubayy (Dubai); Deputy Prime Minister SULTAN bin Zayid Al Nuhayyan (since 20 November 1990)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president note: there is also a Federal Supreme Council (FSC) which is composed of the seven emirate rulers; the council is the highest constitutional authority in the UAE; establishes general policies and sanctions federal legislation, Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi) and Dubayy (Dubai) rulers have effective veto power; meets four times a year
elections: president and vice president elected by the FSC (a group of seven electors) for five-year terms; election last held NA October 1996 (next to be held NA 2001); prime minister and deputy prime minister appointed by the president
election results: ZAYID bin Sultan Al Nuhayyan reelected president; percent of FSC voteóNA, but believed to be unanimous; MAKTUM bin Rashid al-Maktum elected vice president; percent of FSC voteóNA, but believed to be unanimous
Legislative Branch:
  unicameral Federal National Council or Majlis al-Ittihad al-Watani (40 seats; members appointed by the rulers of the constituent states to serve two-year terms) elections: none
note: reviews legislation, but cannot change or veto
Judicial Branch:
  Union Supreme Court, judges appointed by the president
Political Parties and Leaders:
  None
International Organization Participation:
  ABEDA, AfDB, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, CCC, ESCWA, FAO, G-77, GCC, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ISO (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, OPCW, OPEC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO
Flag Description:
  three equal horizontal bands of green (top), white, and black with a thicker vertical red band on the hoist side


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