Posted on May 11, 2018

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) has lauded Qatar for making remarkable investments in protecting cultural heritage in the country and rest of the world which creates an opportunity to interact with different communities.

“I think Qatar is doing already a lot for protecting its own heritage and also presenting its heritage to the world which led to engage in conversation to know each other through exchange of cultures which helps us to live peacefully together,” said Dr. Anna Paolini, Director, Unesco Representative in the Arab States of Gulf & Yemen. “Qatar is investing a lot in culture. For example we are in a fantastic facility, Qatar National Library (QNL), which is a precious jewel to preserve the cultural heritage,” said  Paolini while speaking with The Peninsula on the sidelines of an event held at QNL Auditorium yesterday to observe Europe Day under “2018 European Year of Cultural Heritage”.   

She said that Qatar has world heritage sites, two major museums, one is open and another one is yet to open. Education City has invested a lot in its programme for the conservation of culture and heritage. Apart from this, there are several institutions which have their own private collections. Speaking on the contribution of Qatar to Unesco, Paolini said: “Qatar is an active member of Unesco in many instances with special focus on education.  H H Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation (QF), is Unesco Special Envoy for Basic and Higher Education. Qatar is contributing to ‘Heritage at Risk’ fund which helps us to do emergency restoration and intervention in some regional countries which are in need of quick response for the protection of cultural heritage.”

Speaking on the importance of the event, she said: “It is excellent opportunity to share the ideas and many other things like understanding the meaning of preserving cultural heritage and what we should do as a collective communities for the protection of cultural heritage and the role and interaction of the EU with this part of the world in exchanging knowledge. “On the occasion of Europe Day, the European Union Member-State Embassies based in Qatar have decided to work together with Qatari authorities to organise an event linked to the 2018 European Year of Cultural Heritage,” said Ambassador of Bulgaria in Qatar, Metin Kazak in a key note speech at the event.

The event, which was co-sponsored by EU Member-State Embassies in Qatar, with the support of EUNIC (the European cultural cluster in Doha), took place in partnership with the Qatar National Library (QNL) during the current Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The event included a panel discussion - “Where the Past Meets the Future: Working Together to Preserve our Cultural Heritage”. “We held a panel discussion with our partners in Qatar to share experience and work together to preserve our cultural heritage,” said Kazak. 

He said that it was a wonderful discussion on how to work to preserve cultural arts and objects during this challenging time of war in Syria and Yemen. “To promote our culture in Qatar we are planning to organise EU Film Festival in forthcoming autumn in collaboration with Doha Film Institute and European Jazz Festivals which will be held most probably in November at Katara,” said Kazak. “We also hold crush courses of European languages in collaboration with French institute in Qatar so we are really working to develop cultural ties with Qatar.”

“Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim AI Thani Museum is one of the largest museum in Arab world with huge collection of cultural heritage,” said Kees Wieringa, Director of the Museum. He said that a delegation from the Museum plans to visit Europe, US and rest of the world to increase the collection. “We will construct more museums. Our museum aims at sharing knowledge though culture and targeted to enable everybody from all over the world can find something related to his/her heritage,” said Wieringa.

source: The Peninsula