Shah Rukh Khan, Cate Blanchett and Elton John pick up awards at Davos forum

Cate Blanchett, Shah Rukh Khan and Elton John pictured at the Crystal Awards ceremony of the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos. (Reuters)
Updated 22 January 2018
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Shah Rukh Khan, Cate Blanchett and Elton John pick up awards at Davos forum

DAVOS: Three international celebrities on Monday picked up awards in Davos as the annual World Economic Forum meeting got underway.

The 24th Annual Crystal Awards celebrates the achievements of outstanding artists who have shown a commitment to improving the state of the world.

Actor Cate Blanchett was honored for her leadership in raising awareness of the refugee crisis. She told the audience that nowhere is the fractured world more humanly embodied than in the refugee.

Blanchett was appointed a UNHCR Global Goodwill Ambassador in 2016, in recognition of her commitment to refugees, and has lent her voice and influence to raising awareness, advocating and fundraising for the UNHCR.

Indian film actor Shah Rukh Khan was awarded for his leadership in championing children’s and women’s rights in India. The star is the founder of the non‐profit Meer Foundation, which provides support to female victims of acid attacks and major burn injuries through medical treatment, legal aid, vocational training, rehabilitation and livelihood support.

The third awardee was musician Elton John, for his leadership in the fight against HIV and AIDS. He urged participants to use their sense of human connection to change the world. In 1992, he established the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF), which has raised more than $400 million to date.

The World Economic Forum’s 48th Annual Meeting in Davos is being held under the theme of “Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World.”


My Ramadan with Safi Enayat: Experiencing the Holy Month in Copenhagen

Updated 21 May 2018
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My Ramadan with Safi Enayat: Experiencing the Holy Month in Copenhagen

  • Safi Enayat came to Copenhagen as a refugee from Afghanistan in 2001
  • This Ramadan, he’s hosting a pop-up iftar with chefs from Baker & Spice Dubai

COPENHAGEN: Safi Enayat came to Copenhagen as a refugee from Afghanistan in 2001 and found a job washing dishes in a restaurant kitchen before working his way up to become head chef and a restaurant owner in his own right. His cooking is a reflection of the diverse cultural influences that have characterized his life, from the traditional Afghan dishes with a modern twist he cooks for friends to the Indian-inspired cuisine served in his restaurant chain dhaba.dk, as well as the international fare he has encountered in Europe. This Ramadan, he’s hosting a pop-up iftar with chefs from Baker & Spice Dubai which aims to attract a mixed crowd of Muslims and non-Muslims to break bread over delicious Arabic food.

Read on to experience Ramadan in the European city in his own words...

Everyday life goes on as normal during Ramadan in Copenhagen because the Muslim community here is not that big. In general, people congregate at the city’s larger mosques to pray and break the fast together. There are a few larger events that I look forward to, such as Iftar på Rådhuspladsen, when everyone gathers in City Hall Square and brings a dish to share with their family and friends. It’s an amazing feeling, sitting on the floor in front of this beautiful venue with people from all cultures — Danish, Afghan, Arabs… usually several hundred people attend. Here, you have the right to enjoy your religion as you want and while Danes might be curious to know why we fast, they are very accepting. Last year one of my Danish friends called during Ramadan to say he was fasting for the day to understand it better. I was touched. I think it showed a lot of respect for my religion, which is something I often find here.

Since coming here, I feel like Ramadan has become more visible, people are more aware of what is going on and more interested in why Muslims are fasting and why they do it for so long. It’s a friendly interest. With the long days at this time of the year, many Muslims in Denmark choose to take some of their summer holidays during Ramadan so they have less work and can enjoy the Holy Month.

We’ll be hosting a pop-up iftar called The Opposite Kitchen with Baker & Spice from June 2 to June 8, which is something new to the city. We’ll invite everyone from all cultures and religions to come and learn about the meaning of Ramadan. For me, the beautiful message behind Ramadan is that when you fast, you can see what it’s like for someone who is starving on the other side of the world and can’t put food on the table, and I think it’s important to understand that. I also think that food is an important way of bringing people together. It’s something we all share and enjoy. I found my way into the Danish community through food, it was an easy way to become a citizen of the city and a part of life here. I’ve been here for so many years that this is home for me now.