Manama / WAM
Bahrainâ€™s Deputy Prime Minister, His Highness Sheikh Ali bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, has hailed the vision and the efforts of H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah in supporting intellectuals and preserving the cultural heritage of the GCC countries.
This came during HH Sheikh Ali Al Khalifaâ€™s visit to Sharjah Book Authority (SBA)â€™s participating stand at the 17th edition of Bahrain International Book Fair (BIBF), which runs from March 24 to April 3 at the Bahrain National Museum, Manama.
Sheikh Ali Al Khalifa was accompanied by Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Bahraini Foreign Minister, and received by Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of the SBA, who handed a copy of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan Al Qasimiâ€™s book â€˜Seerat Madinahâ€™ (Biography of a City) to His Highness Sheikh Ali Al Khalifa.
Sheikh Ali bin Khalifa Al Khalifa highlighted the importance of H.H. Sheikh Dr Sultan Al Qasimiâ€™s publications in observing and documenting aspects of life in the Gulf region, including accounts of its most important historical events, based on numerous verified and trustworthy sources included in the pages of historic manuscripts that H.H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan Al Qasimi maintains in his private library.
Sheikha Mai Bint Mohammed Al Khalifa, President of Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities, also visited Sharjah Book Authorityâ€™s stand, expressing gratitude for the emirateâ€™s participation in the 17th edition of Bahrain International Book Fair. She praised the directives of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan Al Qasimi that have helped transform the emirate of Sharjah into a leading capital of culture in the region.
Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of the SBA, said; â€œSharjah Book Authorityâ€™s participation at Bahrain International Book Fair comes in line with the vision of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, who in 1979, launched a counter-uprising to the â€˜Concrete Revolutionâ€™ with a â€˜Cultural Revolutionâ€™ that aimed to build human capital as opposed to skyscrapers, with its attendant directives to promote the important role of culture and books.
In meeting this inspired vision, SBA seeks to develop the book industry through its efforts in organising exhibitions, fairs and conferences that support publishers, authors, illustrators, intellectuals and all those interested in the world of the written word.â€
Al Ameri added, â€œOur participation at BIBF 2016 has contributed to introducing more publishers to the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) Translation Grant Fund and to available opportunities to participate in the next edition of SIBF, as well as the 9th edition of the Sharjah Childrenâ€™s Reading Festival. It also promotes the distinctive services that Sharjah offers to support culture and books, as well as highlights the achievements of Emirati intellectuals locally, regionally and internationally.â€
In collaboration with the Emirates Writers Union, SBA organised a poetry reading evening titled: â€˜Voices from the UAEâ€™ as part of the Cultural Participations programme held on the sidelines of BIBF 2016. Prominent poets Hamda Khamis from Bahrain and Al-Hanoof Mohammed from the UAE read a selection of their poems that delved into a wide range of themes and experiences in life. The poetry evening was held a few days following â€˜Arab Poetry Day,â€™ which was hosted in the Kingdom of Bahrain on March 21.
Poet Hamda Khamis, Member of the Bahrain Writers Associationâ€™, Member of Emirates Writers Union, also read a collection of her poems at the event; including; â€˜An Apology to Childhood,â€™ â€˜Pomegranate Solitude,â€™ â€˜Taranimâ€™ (Hymns), â€˜Masaratâ€™ (Byways) and â€˜Addadâ€™ (Opposites). Al-Hanoof Mohammed, Board Member and Cultural Officer at the Emirates Writers Union, who has published many volumes of poetry, recited a number of her works, including; â€˜Samawatâ€™ (Skies), â€˜Jodranâ€™ (Walls) and â€˜Reeh Yousofâ€™ (Wind of Joseph).
SBAâ€™s poetry reading evenings form part of its initiative launched during the 34th edition of SIBF in collaboration with the Emirates Writers Union, which aims to support Emirati writers and authors, helping them gain international recognition, as well as promoting Emirati culture around the world.