Nouneh Sarkissian, First Lady of Armenia, recently visited the Sharjah Book Authority, SBA, to explore the emirate's leading achievements in the cultural sector.
Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of the SBA, welcomed Sarkissian and introduced her to SBA’s continued efforts in organising the Sharjah International Book Fair, the world's third largest book fair, and to the services offered by the Sharjah Publishing City, the world’s first printing and publishing free zone, including licencing and distribution, printing, translations, freight, logistics, and others.
During the tour, Al Ameri presented Sarkissian with the English editions of publications written by H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah.
On the cultural relations between Sharjah and the Armenian Republic, Al Ameri said, "The close cultural relations between Armenia and Sharjah are exemplified by H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi’s initiative to renovate a 1,000-year old church in Armenia. Nouneh Sarkissian’s visit to the SBA headquarters and SPC, are a reinforcement of the strong bilateral relations the nations enjoy. Her visit also emphasises the importance of building cultural bridges through enhanced communication and understanding between nations to forge healthier bonds in all other aspects that make up a bilateral relationship."
"Promoting and communicating the great gems of Armenian culture raises the value of Emirati and Arab cultures. Throughout history, Arab countries have had close linkages with the Armenian nation and their presence became part and parcel of the social fabric of some Arab countries. Their traditions and culture have seamlessly blended many aspects of ours, bringing the two civilisations together. We are delighted to welcome Armenia’s First Lady to this meeting to clear the way for a series of Armenian-Emirati cultural relations," Al Ameri added.
The First Lady thanked the Ruler of Sharjah, for his leadership of the cultural and humanitarian project, which is at the centre of the emirate's developmental efforts. She also praised the vision and efforts of SBA, and its initiative - the SPC and its services - commending its capacity to grow and develop the publishing industry, not just in the region, but globally.
Sarkissian noted the importance of broadening the horizons of Emirati-Armenian cooperation on the cultural front, to be led by innovative partnerships between publishers, cultural institutions and literary events.