Culture and arts are powerful agents of peace: Noura Al Kaabi

PARIS, Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaab, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, participated in a panel discussion at the Paris Peace Forum, entitled, “The Art of Dialogue, Dialogue of the Arts,” which addressed the importance of culture and the arts to promoting the values of peace.

During the forum, Al Kaabi spoke about the importance of international understanding and cooperation that stem from the relations between peoples through cultural diplomacy. She also presented the cultural vision of the UAE, which believes in the role of culture and the arts in enriching dialogue and cultural exchange among peoples.

“Artistic and cultural mobility are important tools for promoting mutual dialogue and helping understand the factors that unite communities and peoples, even if they have different cultural or religious backgrounds. This will help achieve peace and coexistence, a goal that we all share,” Al Kaabi said.

She then highlighted the tolerance of the UAE’s multicultural society, which is represented by communities from around the world, as well as the hosting of the UAE’s capital, Abu Dhabi, of His Holiness Pope Francis, Head of the Catholic Church, on his first visit to the Arabian Peninsula. This historic visit culminated in the signing of an agreement to establish the “Abrahamic Family House,” which will help unify communities from different cultures and religions, she added.

Al Kaabi also noted the UAE’s pioneering efforts and its cooperation with international organisations, such as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, UNESCO, in launching culturally meaningful projects.

She then presented a brief overview of the UAE’s participation in the “Revive the Spirit of Mosul Initiative,” which includes the reconstruction of the Great Mosque of al-Nuri and its “Humpback Lighthouse,” as well as the Al Sa’a Church and the Al Tahira Church.

The UAE’s global efforts are based on the fundamental principles of humanity, she affirmed, stressing the key role of culture in promoting international dialogue.

Al Kaabi was joined by other panelists including French Culture Minister Franck Riester, Marina Loshak, Director of Moscow’s Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, and US philanthropist and art collector Thomas Kaplan and Chairman of the International Alliance for the Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas,ALIPH.

While exploring the intersection of art and diplomacy, speakers stressed the importance of culture and the arts as powerful agents of peace. The dialogue between cultural institutions, including private ones, is built on fostering personal relationships that transcend traditional diplomacy. They said museums, art collectors and cultural representatives can help further understanding and prosperity through art, overcoming age-old suspicions and the unstable nature of international relations.

The annual international event on global governance issues and multilateralism convenes heads of states, national and local representatives, representatives from international organisations and actors of civil society (non-governmental organizations, private corporations, unions, think tanks, experts, journalists, media etc) for discussing in depth major global challenges and finding practical solutions.

Source: Emirates News Agency