Emirati Festival of Culture in Istanbul
UAE Minister of Culture, Abdul Rahman Al Owais, emphasised on Friday, the importance of interfaith dialogue so that the world can understand how Muslims see Prophet Mohammed and how lovingly they speak about him.
Speaking shortly after opening UAE's Burda Award exhibition at the Dolma Pasha Museum in Istanbul, the Minister also said that the gallery of collections owned by the Award reflects an ideology and a civilised cultural style for interfaith dialogue.
Owais opened the exhibition as part of the Emirati Cultural Festival that started in Turkey on Thursday. Organised by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development, in association with the UAE Embassy, the festival will run until 15th October.
The Minister hailed the deep-rooted cultural relations between UAE and Turkey and said that Istanbul was chosen for the Burda exhibition because of its special place in the ancient Islamic history.
The gallery of Burda collections based in the UAE capital was airlifted to Turkey as part of the exhibition.
The Burda Award, one of the most celebrated prizes in the Muslim world in love and remembrance of Prophet Mohammed, was first launched nine years ago with support from UAE Foreign Minister HH Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed, who was Minister of Culture at that time, recalled Owais.
The award is named after Qassedat-el Burda (Poem of the Mantle)- an ode of praise for Prophet Mohammed composed by the Sufi poet Iman al-Busiri.
The Ministry has endeavoured to make Al Burda Award a leading and distinctive contest on the Islamic world level to celebrate the memory of the Prophet's Birthday each year, and to honour the winners in diverse contests.
The awards are given in three main categories, including poetry in classical Arabic language, calligraphy and Islamic illumination art. Arabs, non-Arabs, Muslims and non-Muslims participate in the contest every year.