Announced with a Tweet: Sheikh Mohammed Welcomes Baby Son Zayed
The traditional birth announcement joined the 21st century yesterday with news of a baby boy for the Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed, and his wife Princess Haya.
Sheikh Mohammed made the announcement on his Twitter account and the news quickly spread, starting with his more than 600,000 Twitter followers.
The message on his account simply read: "Princess Haya and I were blessed with a baby boy. We named him Zayed."
Well wishers tweeted numerous congratulatory messages. "#Sheikh #Mohammed & his wife Princess Haya have been blessed with a baby boy. They named him Zayed. Congratulations!" tweeted hasanbaluch.
As news spread away from social media, Emiratis in Dubai also expressed their delight.
"I think it's lovely news," said Anas Bukhash, managing director of Ahdaaf Sports Club in Dubai. "I also think it's great that they have chosen to name him Zayed, because that name is very dear to the people of the UAE."
Ali Al Sayed, who runs the Dubomedy comedy school in Dubai, said the timing of the birth was perfect for a country that had just celebrated its 40th anniversary.
"The people feel really connected to the leadership right now, especially with the recent celebrations and the sixth anniversary of Sheikh Mohammed's accession," he said.
"It's good news and I want to wish them all the best for the future," said Marwan Al Zarouni, a 24-year-old Emirati in Dubai. "I just heard about it through friends on BlackBerry and then I read the Twitter account of Sheikh Mohammed. I want to congratulate His Highness and Princess Haya and their whole family on the birth."
Alia Al Mur, 26, who works in marketing and events in Dubai, said there was growing excitement about waiting to see a photograph of little Sheikh Zayed.
"I think we're all waiting for the pictures of the baby, but it's great news all around," she said. "The name they have chosen is so inspiring."
She said the news would give a lift to the whole country.
Alex McNabb, a public relations consultant, said there was a clear trend for public figures to use social media to announce important news in recent years.
"I'm not surprised Sheikh Mohammed has announced this news on Twitter, because he is savvy when it comes to things like this," he said. "I remember he also used Twitter for the Burj Khalifa announcement, so for something like this, which will generate a lot of positive responses, it's not a difficult decision to make."
By Nadeem Hanif