Singapore shows interest in Saudi culture

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Updated 30 June 2013
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Singapore shows interest in Saudi culture

A new book collection on Saudi Arabia was launched at the Central Public Library (CPL) in Singapore on Friday, marking the World Day of the Arabic Language.
According to a source at the Singapore Embassy here, the event was inaugurated by Abdullah Saleh Alwashmi, secretary-general of the King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz International Center for Arabic Language (KAICAL), and Elaine Ng, CEO of the Singapore National Library Board (NLB).
It was attended by Saudi Ambassador to Singapore Mansour Al Mazmomy and Yaacob Ibrahim, minister-in-charge of Muslim affairs and minister for communications and information. 
“The opening of the Saudi book collection at the Central Public Library in Singapore is a sign of the growing interest of Singaporeans in the Middle East, especially Saudi Arabia. It is a mark of the growing cultural exchange between our two countries,” said Singapore Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Lawrence Anderson. 
He said that Singaporeans can now discover more about Saudi Arabia through the literary collection donated by the Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission (SACM). 
Available at the CPL, housed in the National Library Building, the collection includes over 200 fiction and non-fiction books on Saudi Arabia’s arts, culture, history, music, customs and traditions.
The donation was the result of a memorandum of understanding signed between the NLB of Singapore and the SACM last year to promote cross-cultural understanding and foster closer ties.
The titles in the collection include “The Saudi Artist Today” by Abdulaziz Ashour featuring the works of 18 Saudi artists of the 1990s who represent the new art wave.
“The Handicrafts of Saudi Arabia” by Abdulla Al-Akeel captures the vanishing trade through captivating photographs. The collection also includes fiction titles by children’s author and illustrator Halla bint Khalid.
At the launch, library visitors tried their hands in Arabic calligraphy and learned about the antecedents of the Arabic language and culture at four public talks. In the coming months, the public can look forward to an interesting line-up of programs and exhibitions on the rich tradition and heritage of Saudi Arabia.
The NLB of Singapore, through its network of 25 public libraries, promotes reading, learning and literacy. The libraries also encourage appreciation and awareness of Singapore’s history through their wide range of programs and collection on Singapore and regional content.


‘Saudi Arabia’s stability, security a red line for Muslim world’

The Supreme Council of the Muslim World League (MWL) holds its 43rd session in Makkah. (SPA)
Updated 2 min 26 sec ago
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‘Saudi Arabia’s stability, security a red line for Muslim world’

  • The council praised the Kingdom’s pioneering role in the Muslim world, its religious importance, its history of supporting international security and peace efforts

JEDDAH: The Supreme Council of the Muslim World League (MWL) held its 43rd session in Makkah, with senior scholars and ministers from Muslim countries in attendance.
The council expressed solidarity with the Saudi leadership and people, and condemned attempts to target the Kingdom, saying its stability and security are a red line for the Muslim world.
The council praised the Kingdom’s pioneering role in the Muslim world, its religious importance, its history of supporting international security and peace efforts, and its fight against extremism and terrorism.
The great place that the Kingdom occupies in the hearts of Muslims is founded on a sincere and firm belief in its care for Muslim sanctity, the council said, adding that targeting Saudi stability also affects international stability.
The council discussed several matters, including the Palestinian cause, developments in Syria and Yemen, the tragedy of Myanmar’s Rohingya people, the fight against extremist groups such as Al-Qaeda and Daesh, and the importance of promoting dialogue among followers of different religions and cultures.
It also discussed the well-being of Muslim minorities in non-Muslim countries, expressing regret and concern about Islamophobia, and calling for peaceful coexistence.
The council urged Muslims in these countries to fulfil their duty to educate their children, and protect them from deviant ideologies and groups that use religion as a pretext to justify terrorism and extremism.
It also urged Muslims in these countries to use legitimate channels to enjoy their just religious and cultural rights, to contribute to societal development, and to support stability and integration.
The council highlighted the MWL’s efforts and international presence in influential platforms, especially in the West.
Islamophobia is creating serious rifts in multicultural societies and damaging the social contract based on equal citizenship, the council said.
It expressed its full support for the MWL’s programs and activities that highlight the truth about Islam and its values, promote intellectual and religious awareness among Muslim minorities, and spread the values of toleration, moderation and peace.
The council reviewed the MWL’s efforts against radicalization and terrorism, including international collaborative programs, conferences, forums, statements and visits to Muslim and non-Muslim countries.
It noted the MWL’s efforts to promote dialogue among followers of different religions and cultures, including its secretary-general’s meeting with Vatican leaders, the signing of a historic cooperation agreement with the Pontifical Council for Interfaith Dialogue, and organizing an international peace conference at Oxford University.
The council agreed to establish an international center for cultural exchanges, as part of its support for the Conference on Cultural Rapprochement between the US and the Muslim World.
The council stressed the importance of building good East-West relations and launching initiatives to foster cooperation, cultural exchanges and positive values.
“Only 10 percent of our common principles are sufficient to bring peace and harmony to our world,” said MWL Secretary-General Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa.