Inside Africa

Egypt’s president opens 50th Cairo international book fair

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi opened on Tuesday the Cairo International Book Fair, the country’s major annual book fair which runs for its 50th edition this year.

The two-week event brings together around 1,724 publishers and participants from 35 countries, with Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana taking part for the first time, state news agency MENA said.

Around 10 African countries, 16 Asian countries, seven countries from Europe, and two from the Americas are participating.

A total of 749 publishing houses are participating in the fair, with 579 houses from Egypt alone and 170 foreign houses.

Some 580 volunteers have been assigned to assist the guests of the fair.

The fair commemorates this year former Egyptian culture minister Tharwat Okasha, the brains behind the event, and author Suhair Al-Kalamawy, the first head of the General Egyptian Book Organization.

The event, which runs until Feb. 5, will feature hundreds of side events dedicated to culture, arts and children, as well as eight workshops on writing, theater and fine art. It will host around 170 Arab and foreign guests, as well as over 300 poets and 2,500 writers, critics and artists.

This year’s edition is held for the first time in Egypt’s International Exhibition Center in New Cairo.

Since its debut in 1969, the event had long been held at the Cairo International Fairgrounds in the northeastern district of Nasr City. Enditem

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