By Joseph Varghese/Staff Reporter
More than 25,000 people had visited Logos Hope, world’s largest floating book fair during its stay in Qatar. The ship leaves Doha today for Manama in Bahrain after a 10-day stay. This was the second visit of the ship to Qatar.
Logos Hope, a vessel carrying more than half million books, is operated by Good Books for All (GBA) Ships e.V., an international charitable organisation registered in Germany with more than 400 crew members from nearly 50 countries.
Speaking to Gulf Times, Cat Tse, media relations officer for Logos Hope, said that it was a great feeling coming back to Qatar. “Last time, we had a longer stay and therefore more people visited the book fair. Moreover, it was our first visit and people were anxious to visit the book fair. This time we had only a short stay and we hope that the Qatari officials would extend another invitation so that we can come again.”
The visit of the ship was intended to convey the message of peace and friendship among different cultures and inculcate the habit of reading among wider communities.
She added that during their stay in Qatar, the crew organised a Cultural Café event to familiarise the visitors with life on board. During the event, the crew displayed variety of cultures in the form of music and dances from around the world.
Thanking the Qatari government for its hospitality, Tse said that it was also a great opportunity for her and the entire team to know more about Qatar and its culture. “We had a trip to Katara and watched the show Ali Baba and 40 Thieves which was really mesmerising. Moreover the people are really friendly and it was a great opportunity to meet people from diverse cultures. We also visited the Museum of Islamic Art which is really fascinating,” she added.
A large number of people could be seen visiting the ship yesterday afternoon and buying books and other souvenirs. The ship has a good stock of educational materials and children’s books. Families along with their children were seen buying many educational books as well as fictions.
One of the visitors on board, Jean Dias, an Indian national, said that she was very delighted to see so many books on display. She said: “I could buy a good number of books for my children. Moreover some of the books are not commonly found in other markets which make it even more exciting.”
Logos Hope will be in Manama for two weeks from where it will move to Abu Dhabi and Ras Al Khaima. The ship reached Qatar on October 10 after its visit to Oman.
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