Russia and the Middle East
Sat, 03 february 2018Sat
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Sharjah Ruler meets Hollande at Paris International Book Fair

H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, met French President Francois Hollande on Thursday during his visit to the 37th Paris international Book Fair, PIBF 2017.

During the meeting attended by Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, Founder and CEO of Kalimat Group, the French President selected Sharjah as the Guest of Honour for PIBF in 2018. The Sharjah Ruler and Hollande discussed issues of mutual interest focussing on the role of culture, support of publishing industry, and preserving its heritage.

In this context, the French President underlined the strong relations between France and the UAE, noting that Sharjahs presence at the PIBF further promotes these ties. Highlighting the Sharjah Rulers huge efforts in areas of publishing, Hollande added, "The book is the real heritage of all nations and we have to preserve and promote it."

Sheikh Sultan Al Qasimi thanked Hollande for selecting Sharjah as the guest of honour at 38th edition of PIBF next year, valuing the mutual and historic co-operation between various French cultural institutions and the Emirate of Sharjah, which has led to highlighting Sharjahs experience in the field, and resulted in an exchange of expertise between France and Europe at large.

Sheikh Sultan noted that the Arab presence and participation at PIBF was rather poor and that Sharjah would work on supporting and enhancing the Arab participation that would fit and honour the Arab culture. The Ruler of Sharjah also talked about some of his upcoming publications, which outline the real relationship between France and the Arab Gulf coast countries.

Sheikh Sultan Al Qasimi presented a French copy of his book "Hadeeth Al Thakira" to President Hollande. During his visit, the Ruler of Sharjah toured various pavilions beginning with Sharjahs stand represented by Sharjah Book Authority, SBA, where he was briefed by Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of SBA, on the authoritys magnitude and important participation in the fair.

The SBA's participation reflects Sheikh Sultan Al Qasimi's directives to build and extend bridges of communication between the Arab and Islamic culture on one hand, and with Western culture on the other hand. At the SBAs pavilion, Sheikh Sultan received several ambassadors, publishers, intellectuals, thought leaders and media persons. Sheikh Sultan, accompanied by Bodour Al Qasimi and the Sharjah cultural and media delegation, toured other Arab pavilions taking part at PIBF.

The Ruler of Sharjah was also accompanied by several officials, chief editors of Emirati newspapers, thought leaders, literary figures, researchers and publishers.