The Cultural Village Foundation (Katara) opened on Thursday the 'Ibn Rayb' Cultural Street which is located behind Katara's amphitheater, in cooperation with the Qatari Publishers and Distributors Forum.
Upon inspecting the pavilions of the publishing houses participating in the cultural initiative, Katara General Manager Dr Khaled bin Ibrahim al-Sulaiti said that the Ibn Rayb Cultural Street includes wings for libraries and publishing houses.
It is not only a cultural street or a marketplace for selling books, but rather an oasis of thought and knowledge, a meeting place for cultures and cross-fertilization of visions, he said, expressing his hope that it will attract writers and intellectuals and become a permanent meeting place for them. He hoped that its accompanying activities, which are scheduled to take place after the end of the Covid-19 pandemic, would constitute a destination for writers, thinkers and culture lovers, befitting them and their great and distinguished cultural status.
He added that Katara is pleased to announce to its audience that the Ibn Rayb Cultural Street will receive visitors until next summer in line with the precautionary measures in place to prevent Covid-19 so that cultural pioneers, booklovers and those looking for new publications can visit its wings and acquire what they like of the distinguished titles in literature, creativity, science and various other areas.
Director of Cultural Affairs and Events at Katara Khalid Abdul Rahim al-Sayed said that Qatar's interest in books and literature is nothing new, as Qatar was the first Gulf country to hold a regular book fair since the year 1975, and its book fair is an important event with which all segments of society interact. He added the opening of the Ibn Rayb Cultural Street in Katara is an extension of this accumulating cultural heritage of the Qatari society.
Launching this cultural initiative in co-operation with the Qatari Publishers and Distributors Forum would enhance the role of books in increasing community awareness and make them keep abreast of all that is emerging in various aspects of knowledge, he said.
For his part, Director of the Qatari Publishers and Distributors Forum Ibrahim al-Bohashem al-Sayed said that the aim of the Ibn Rayb Cultural Street initiative is to promote books and highlight the role of Qatari publishers and distributors, and it is the first partnership with Katara Publishing House. He added it was preceded by initiatives launched by the forum before the Covid-19 pandemic which allowed readers and interested people to access 100 books online.
This initiative included distributing 6, thousand books to quarantined people after the pandemic in cooperation with the Qatar Red Crescent Society, in addition to other initiatives with the Hamad Bin Khalifa University Press, and another initiative targeted the displaced Syrians, in cooperation with the Qatar Fund for Development and the Qatar Red Crescent Society, he said.
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