Ambassador Mohamed Salim Alharthy of the Sultanate of Oman in Seoul hosted a reception at the Grand Intercontinental Hotel in Seoul on June 19, 2014 with the attendance of Minister Dr. Abdulmunim Mansorrr Al Hasani of Information of Oman to mark Oman’s participation in the Seoul International Book Fair 2014 as a guest of honor.
Attending the reception from the Omani side, besides Minister Al Hasani and Ambassador Alharthy, was Director-General Majeed Mohamed Al Rawas of the Media at the Ministry of Information of Oman.
There were many distinguished guests from Korean society and the Diplomatic Corps in Korea, who included many mission chiefs, e.g., Ambassadors Hocine Sahraoui of Algeria, Albino Malungo of Angola, Jorge Roballo of Argentina, William Paterson of Australia, Hany Moawad Selim Labib of Egypt, Khalil Ismai Abdul Sahib Al-Mosawi of Iraq, Mohammed Chraibi of Morocco, Tajeldin Elhadi Eltahir of Sudan and Alisher Kurmanov of Uzbekistan.
Speaking to the guests, Minister Dr. Al Hasani said, “Book fairs, wherever they might be in different countries of the world, seek to foster ties, consolidate relations, contribute to rapprochement between cultures and spread them in various global arenas. They are spacious grounds to garner more knowledge and sciences.” Then he said that the Sultanate of Oman seeks to reinforce its relations with different countries of the world in line with a moderate, judicious policy based on the principles of mutual respect and non-interference in the affairs of other countries and that, in the meantime, Oman works hard to communicate with different countries and nations with the prime aim of spreading peace and harmony. (Excerpts from the speech are at the end of this Article.)
On display at the food table for the guests were many traditional Omani foods, which included Omani palm dates and candies made with them.
Then there were performances by the Oman Royal Orchestra, which included several international music numbers loved by cosmopolitan music lovers from which stood out “Time to Say Goodbye” composed by Francesco Sartori of Italy.
The music was followed by presentation of videos introducing various aspects of Oman.
Toward the end of the reception, Ambassador AlHarthy presented Chairman Koh Young-soo of Korea Publication Association with a memento.
Excerpts from the speech of Minister Al Hasani:
May Peace be upon You all
First of all, I'm pleased to welcome this auspicious gathering. You are most welcome in this friendly meet which aims to promote familiarity among this elite selection of personage, media personnel and those keen on cultural interaction. It is a valuable opportunity to exchange expertise and knowledge with you and among you.
The Government of the Sultanate of Oman, represented by the Ministry of Information, is pleased to be the Guest of Honour this year at the current round of Seoul International Book Fair 2014 following a generous invitation from the Chairman of the Korean Publishers Association. We would like to thank the Government of South Korea and appreciate its initiative in offering us this opportunity, hoping that our participation will reflect a vivid image of Oman's society and a small, yet significant, part of our country's glorious civilization.
Undoubtedly, those of you who visited the Sultanate before must have developed a strong sense of time and space deeply enshrined in all aspects that embody the grandeur of Oman's identity.
We hope that the book fair will offer you a suitable opportunity to explore the Sultanate's civilization and its renaissance which has, over the past four decades, brought about rapid development covering a wide range of economic and social fields.
I would like to note that Omani-Korean relations are not a product of the present moment; they are in fact deep-rooted and distinguished in many spheres, particularly in economic areas and in the fields of oil, gas, technology and renewable energy?to mention a few. Oman is also endowed with many fascinating natural sceneries and a great potential to attract a large number of Korean tourists. The Sultanate also boasts many tourist facilities and a strong economic infrastructure. It is worth noting here that this year marks the 40th Anniversary of Oman-Korea Relations.
Through this participation, we hope to enhance bilateral ties between the Sultanate and South Korea. We also hope to benefit from the Korean experience in development, the Republic’s pioneering role and the status it enjoys in the international community.
The Sultanate of Oman is pleased to extend its deep thanks to the Republic of South Korea, its government and its people. In particular, we would like to thank the Korean Publishers Association for its efforts in preparing for and organizing this exposition. We wish everyone success and we hope that the book fair will achieve all the great goals it aspires for.
We would like to invite you all to visit Oman’s pavilion and have a close look at the Sultanate’s culture and traditional arts; thanking you and wishing a marvelous experience as you enjoy listening to the musical performances of Royal Oman Symphony Orchestra which is accompanying us this evening.
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