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UAE islands  

Friday 18 April 2014 (UAE)   
 
   
 

List of islands off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE)

List of islands, natural, man-made, artificial, off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as part of the territory of the emirates of Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, RAK, Sharjah, Umm Al Quwain, UAQ. The UAE has a number of natural islands, most of them off the coast of Abu Dhabi, and belonging to the emirate of Abu Dhabi, but there are a handful of others, and then there are the artificial islands being constructed (or not in some cases - just ideas on a drawing board somewhere).

Abu Dhabi islands

See list of Abu Dhabi islands.

Ajman islands
Dubai islands

See list of Dubai islands. Some of the larger artificial island projects include:

  • Jumeirah Palm Island - the first of three palm shaped islands. The other two are Jebel Ali Palm and Deira Palm.
  • The Universe Dubai - some islands arranged like the solar system. Project on hold or cancelled.
  • The World by Nakheel - about 250 small islands arranged like a map of the world.
Fujairah islands
Ras Al Khaimah islands
  • Abu Musa - see Iranian occupied islands below
  • Al Marjan Island (artificial) - developments include La Hoya Bay project, Real Madrid Resort Island (see below), Rixos (Turkey) and Ras Al Khaimah Hospitality LLC JV resort (announced March 2012?).
  • Dana Island (suspended or delayed or cancelled?)
  • Greater Tunb - see Iranian occupied islands below
  • Lesser Tunb - see Iranian occupied islands below
  • Mina Al Arab
  • Noor City (status unknown)
  • Real Madrid Resort Island - announced by the Real Madrid football club 22 March 2012. A $1 billion artifical island to be developed by Real Madrid as part of the Al Marjan Island project. Opening date reportedly planned for January 2015 (but don't hold your breath given the state of other island developments in RAK). Facilities to include amusement park, 5-star hotel (450 rooms), Real Madrid museum, sports facilities (football field and 10,000 seat stadium), football training center, shopping mall, sports medical clinic, submarine circuit (no, we don't know what that means either), yacht club, marina, residential villas, private beaches. Total area about 430,000 square meters, or 500,000 sq meters, or 50 hectares (all 3 figures seen reported). Executive head of the developer, RAK Marjan Island Football Company (based in Luxembourg, not RAK), is Louis Armand De Rouge (March 2012 reports). Development is a JV between Real Madrid and the RAK Marjan Island Football Investment Fund. Annual visitor number of 1 million expected (WAM 01 April 2012).
  • Saraya Islands - 4 natural islands with developments planned (or suspended, or cancelled - status unknown).
  • Solar Islands - floating islands with solar panels for electricity generation. Reported September 2010 as a concept or project, status unknown.
UAE islands occupied by Iran
  • There are three natural islands which are claimed by the UAE as part of the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, but also claimed by Iran (and have been occupied by Iran since 1971) - Abu Musa, Greater Tunb (not Tumb or Thumb), and Lesser Tunb.
  • 14 April 2012 - Reuters reported that GCC countries would meet in Riyadh to discuss the territorial dispute between the UAE and Iran, prompted by Ahmadinejad's visit to Abu Musa. Reuters also quoted Mohsen Rezaei, the secretary-general of the Expediency Council in Iran, as saying "At a time when Israel bangs the drum of war, what benefit does this behavior from our friends in the Emirates have? It is better that they apologize and stop following the Zionists (Israelis) because the region needs peace and cooperation." One wonders what he thinks the connection is between following Zionists, and a territorial claim on the island of Abu Musa.
  • 13 April 2012 (WAM) - a statement was issued by the Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, which said that President Ahmadinijad's visit was "a provocative step that contravenes with the initiatives and efforts exerted by the UAE to reach an amicable settlement to end the occupation of Iran to the UAE three Islands."
  • 12 April 2012 (WAM) - the UAE ambassador to Iran (Saif Mohammed Abid al-Zaabi) was recalled to the UAE after Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, visited the island of Abu Musa.
  • 11 April 2012 - a WAM report ('Abdullah bin Zayed vehemently condemns Ahmadinejad's visit to UAE's Abu Mousa') said Sheikh Abdullah blasted the visit as a "flagrant violation" of the UAE sovereignty over its territories and a "set back" to all efforts and attempts the UAE is making to find a peaceful settlement to Iran's occupation of the three UAE islands, referring to Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit to the island of Abu Musa on 11 April 2012.
  • 11 April 2012 (IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency) - IRNA reported that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad visited the island of Abu Musa where he addressed a crowd and made a speech about the Persian Gulf name (referred to as the Arabian Gulf by GCC countries). The report said "Ahmadinejad said it is a crystal clear fact that Persian Gulf is Iranian and no one can doubt or ignore it."

Timeline - Iran occupied islands of Abu Mousa and the Greater and Lesser Tumb (WAM report 14 April 2012)

1970: Iran lays claim to the islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa.

November, 1971: Iran occupies the three islands of Greater and Lesser Tunb and Abu Mousa from UAE. The UAE is calling for a peaceful resolution or the use of international arbitration to resolve the issue.

14/04/1980: Palestinian leader, Khalid Al Hassan, defended Arab claims for the return of three tiny Iranian-occupied islands, Abu Mousa and the Greater and Lesser Tumb, to Arab rule.

12/01/1981: Bahrain and Qatar support the UAE's demand for the return of three Iran-occupied Gulf islands, 28/03/1982: His Highness Shaikh Saqr bin Mohammed al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Ras al Khaimah said, UAE will hot bargain or change its stand regarding the three islands occupied by Iran.

24/08/1992: More than 100 teachers and their families from the UAE were stranded in the Gulf waters after they were denied entry to Abu Mousa Island by the Iranian authorities.

09/09/1992: GCC condems Iranian occupation of the UAE islands - Greater Tunb and Lesser Tunb and Abu Mousa.

27/09/1992: Delegations from the UAE and the Islamic Republic of Iran ended their first round of negotiations on their dispute over the islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs in Abu Dhabi.

23/11/1993: Arab Gulf countries reiterated their support for UAE's sovereignty over the islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunb, they fully backed all peaceful measures taken by the UAE.

27/03/1994: The Arab League ministerial council ended its session in Cairo, by supporting UAE's efforts to restore its legitimate rights and sovereignty over the three islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs occupied by Iran.

29/09/1994 : The launch of an air link between the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas and Abu Mousa by the Iranian authorities is considered as violation of UAE's sovereignty over the island.

30/09/1994: Iran sets up desalination plant on the UAE island of Abu Mousa.

06/12/1994: GCC ministers reviewed at the meeting in Manama a working paper submitted by the UAE on Iran's occupation of the islands of Abu Mousa and Lesser and Greater Tunbs, to solve the dispute peacefully by referring the issue to international arbitration.

06/01/1995 : Iran inaugurated a court house on the UAE island of Abu Mousa. The UAE reiterated that it would take the dispute to the International Court of Justice.

09/03/1995: Britain declared his country's support to UAE's decision to take the issue of its three islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs occupied by Iran to the International Court of Justice.

January, 1996: Media reported that, Iran was building an airport and a harbour on the island of Abu Mousa.

20/05/1996: Arab League blast Iran to build a port on one of the three UAE islands.

19/09/1996 : The UAE's FNC delegation rejected Iran's claims over the three islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs, at the International Parliamentary Union (IPU) conference in Beijing.

23/11/1996 : UAE said, Iran is stockpiling offensive weapons on the three occupied islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs posing a threat to the UAE and GCC states.

September, 1997: The UAE protest against Iranian naval exercise on the occupied island of Abu Mousa and reiterated its sovereignty over the island.

December, 2000 : President His Highness Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan calls on Iran to end its occupation of the three islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa through peaceful measures.

26/02/2001: The 38th Arab Parliamentary Union gave their full support to the UAE's sovereignty over its three islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa, rejecting Iran's occupation of the islands.

13/03/2001: The Arab League council held 115th session in Cairo and has called on the Iranian government to end its occupation of the three UAE islands of Abu Mousa and the Greater and Lesser Tunbs and halt its policy of fait accompli.

20/03/2001: The UAE delivered a strongly-worded protest to Iran over a visit by an Iranian parliamentary delegation to the three UAE islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa occupied by Iran.

26/03/2011: The Arab Summit held in Amman, drafted a resolution denounces the Iranian occupation of the three UAE islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs as a violation of UAE's. The draft resolution also condemns the building of settlements to accommodate Iranian population in these three Arab islands which belong to UAE.

23/04/2001: The GCC-EU Joint Ministerial Council noted with concern the lack of progress in efforts to resolve the territorial conflict between the UAE and Iran over the three UAE islands of Abu Mousa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs, which are occupied by Iran.

06/06/2001: The UAE called upon the international community at an extraordinary meeting of the UN General Assembly on the Second Human Settlements Conference, Habitat II, to urge Iran to end its occupation of the three UAE islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa through a peaceful dialogue or by referring of the issue to the International Court of Justice.

27/09/2001: The Executive Committee of the second session of the Islamic Parliamentary Union (IPU) held in Rabat, appointed a four member committee to narrow differences between the UAE and Iran over the best way to start direct bilateral negotiations over the three UAE islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa occupied by Iran.

29/11/2001: The Federal National Council, FNC, has issued a statement renewing the UAE's peaceful call to Iran to end its occupation of the three UAE islands of Abu Mousa and the Greater and Lesser Tunbs reiterating that the three islands, which are being occupied by the Islamic republic, belong to the people of the United Arab Emirates.

December 1992 (Abu Dhabi): Abu Dhabi Declaration: emphasis on the sovereignty of the UAE over the three islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa, and support for efforts to develop the defence and security capabilities of the member states 10/03/2002: The 22-member Arab League yesterday called on Iran to revise its stand rejecting a "peaceful settlement" of its territorial dispute over three UAE islands of Abu Mousa and the Greater and Lesser Tunbs.

25/04/2006: The UAE authorities advised people to stay away from the occupied island of Abu Mousa and the surrounding waters till territorial issues with Iran are settled. A French resident of Sharjah has been detained in Iran since November 2005 after getting caught fishing off the island of Abu Mousa.

26/06/2007: Iran has arrested the crews of three Emirati boats it has seized. "Three boats were seized by the coast guards 17 [nautical] miles from Abu Mousa towards Bandar Lengeh.

29/09/2007: The UAE urged Iran to show goodwill to solve the issue of occupation of the UAE islands amicably. No progress has so far been made on the settlement of the issue of the Iranian occupation of the three UAE islands, UAE Foreign Minister Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan told the 62nd session of the UN general assembly 30/03/2008: The Arab Summit wound up in Damascus with a renewed call to Iran to end its occupation of the UAE islands of Abu Mousa, the Greater and Lesser Tunbs.

08/10/2008: The Arab League's Council of Foreign Ministers has condemned the continued Iranian occupation of UAE's three islands, Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa.

04/03/2010: The Arab League council threw its weight behind the UAE's sovereignty over its three islands Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa and its peaceful measures and means to restore its occupied islands.

20/04/2010: The occupied islands of Abu Mousa, Greater and Lesser Tunbs will sooner or later return to the UAE, Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Foreign Minister told the Federal National Council (FNC).

10/05/2010: Turkey is willing to act as an intermediary in talks between the UAE and Iran over the issue of the occupied UAE islands of Abu Mousa, Lesser Tunb and Greater Tunb, according to Bahaeddine Jabaji, adviser to the President of Turkey.

29/09/2010: The UAE again demanded the return of its three islands: The Greater Tunb, The Lesser Tunb and Abu Mousa, occupied by Iran at the General Debate of the 65th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

07/12/2010: The GCC leaders reiterated their unwavering stand towards the UAE's sovereignty over its three islands -Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa, which were occupied by Iran.

11/04/2012: The UAE condemned the visit of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to occupied islands of the Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mousa.

Sharjah islands
  • Sir Bu Nair - area 1,300 hectares, location 112 km off the Sharjah coast. Was a pearl divers camp, became a nature reserve in 2000, given protected status under the Ramsar Convention (signed by the UAE in 2007) in 2013 (announced 19 Dec 2013, WAMi). The Environment and Protected Areas Authority UAE is working with Shurooq, Sharjah Investment and Development Authority, to develop access for tourists and visitors.
Umm Al Quwain islands
Last update Saturday 21-Dec-2013. Page development 4L.
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