Over 600 prisoners in the United Arab Emirates will be released ahead of the country’s National Day next month.
UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan ordered the release of 628 prisoners, imprisoned for various crimes, ahead of the celebrations, according to Emirati state news agency WAM.
“The move comes as part of President Khalifa’s keenness to give pardoned inmates an opportunity to start a new life and ease the suffering of their families,” WAM reported.
The UAE will also pay any debts and fines the prisoners owe to the government, according to WAM.
In addition, 49 prisoners in the emirate of Ajman will be freed after Ajman ruler Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi ordered the release of prisoners in his territory on Tuesday.
Procedures for their release will be arranged immediately, according to WAM, citing the commander-in-chief of the Ajman Police.
The UAE will celebrate its 49th National Day on December 2.
Major initiatives are scheduled for the commemoration, including a dramatic live production named “Seeds of the Union,” which will be broadcast on television across the country.
The country was formed on December 2, 1971 and consists of seven emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah, and Umm Al Quwain.