ISRS Expert: Presidents of Uzbekistan and Egypt stress the importance of developing cultural, educational and religious ties
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Department head of the Institute for Strategic and Regional studies under the President of Uzbekistan Alisher Kadyrov, commented on the results of the Uzbek-Egyptian summit held in Bishkek on February 20-21 for the “Dunyo” IA:
The Arab Republic of Egypt is an important partner for Uzbekistan both in the Middle East and on the African continent. Strengthening cooperation with this country is one of the priorities of the foreign policy of our republic.
Today, the countries maintain a high level of political mutual trust, consistently promote trade, economic, investment, scientific and technical cooperation, and intensify cultural and humanitarian exchanges. This is confirmed by the results of the visit of the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev to Egypt on February 20-21 this year.
During the talks, the Heads of State discussed in detail the issues of further building up the Uzbek-Egyptian cooperation and agreed to bring relations to the level of a comprehensive partnership.
The key topics were issues of cardinal expansion of cooperation in the areas of politics, security, trade and industrial cooperation.
Particular attention was also paid to the development of relations in the cultural and humanitarian sphere. The importance of the development of cultural, educational and religious ties was emphasized. An agreement was reached on promoting cooperation in the field of training specialists in the Arabic language.
It is important to emphasize that cultural exchange, being a priority area of humanitarian cooperation between Tashkent and Cairo, contributes to the growth of mutual understanding between peoples, which, in turn, affects the stability of bilateral relations.
At the same time, the exclusivity of bilateral partnerships lies in the special role played by both countries in the development of Islamic civilization. That is why the cultural dimension is a basic constant for our relations, contributing to finding common ground in all other areas.
In this context, it should be noted that the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev began his official visit to the Arab Republic of Egypt with a visit to the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization.
Looking with great interest at the artifacts of various civilizations that have taken place on Egyptian soil, the head of our state stressed that history and culture serve as an important means of further rapprochement between two peoples with an equally rich heritage.
Representatives of the Egyptian side, in turn, noted that the peoples have much in common, these traditions contribute to strengthening the bonds of friendship and mutual understanding.
Therefore, it is no coincidence that the leader of Uzbekistan laid flowers at the foot of the monument to our great ancestor Ahmad Farghani, erected in 2007 in Cairo during the visit.
At the beginning of the Middle Ages, the great great scholar Ahmad Farghani invented a “Nilometer” - a device for measuring the volume and speed of water on the Rawdah (Rhoda) Island, located on the Nile River, which flows through the center of Cairo.
In this context, it should be noted that cultural and humanitarian ties between Uzbekistan and Egypt are not just a separate area of interaction between the two states and peoples. They have a long, deep character. They can be described as "unique".
This interaction is developing in such areas as culture, science, education, art, public diplomacy. Closer cooperation between the scientific circles of the two countries is expanding, works of fiction are being translated into the languages of both states, joint exhibitions, conferences, etc. are being practiced.
From 1993 to 2022, the Fund for Technical Cooperation with the CIS Countries under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Egypt (now the Egyptian Agency of Partnership for Development) organized advanced training courses in various areas for specialists from Uzbekistan.
During this period, more than 1,200 Uzbeks improved their skills in courses on diplomacy, security, business, banking, transport, medicine, and Arabic.
Famous Egyptian scientists took part in the presentation of books on the history and rich cultural heritage of Uzbekistan at the Institute of Oriental Studies named after Abu Rayhan Beruni of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
In particular, the participants of the presentation were presented the works of "Boburnoma" translated into Arabic by Magda Makhluf, "Uzbekistan: the origins of Islamic civilization" by Ahmad Tarabik, "Monuments and Islamic culture of Bukhara" by Ahmad Rajab Muhammad Ali Rizk.
In 2021, the presentation of the book "Journey to the Heart" was held in Cairo with the participation of 18 young Uzbek poets, writers, journalists and embassy staff. It contains translations of works by Uzbek writers and poets into English and Arabic.
Religious and educational institutions play an important role in this area of bilateral cooperation. Uzbekistan and Egypt support the promotion of the principles of tolerance, the educational values of the religion of Islam, the preservation of its humanitarian nature, the study of the religious and spiritual heritage of the two peoples.
Egypt recognizes the importance of joint study of the scientific heritage of our great scientists Imam Bukhari, Imam Termizi, Imam Moturidi, Abu Muin Nasafi, Mahmud Zamakhshari, who made a great contribution to the development of Islam.
In 2018, the Chief Imam of Egypt, head of the Al-Azhar complex Sheikh Ahmad At-Tayyib visited Uzbekistan. During the visit, he was received by the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
Documents on cooperation were signed between Al-Azhar and a number of religious and scientific institutions of Uzbekistan.
Since 2019, the Department of Arabic Language and Literature of Al-Azhar has been operating as part of the Faculty of Classical Oriental Philology of the International Islamic Academy of Uzbekistan.
There are more than 100,000 historical manuscripts in Uzbekistan, including those in Arabic. The study and introduction of these manuscripts and books into international scientific circulation can become an important task for future joint projects between countries.
In summary, we can say that the current visit of the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev laid a solid foundation and ensured positive dynamics in the development of Uzbek-Egyptian cooperation.
This will also help expand and strengthen the existing base of bilateral contacts between humanitarian organizations so that partners from Uzbekistan and Egypt can plan bright creative projects aimed at bringing the peoples of the two countries closer and deeply penetrating each other’s richest historical and cultural heritage.
That is why the development of intercultural dialogue between Uzbekistan and Egypt serves as the basis for preserving and promoting the diversity of cultures, cooperation in the study of cultural and natural heritage, which contributes to the expansion of contacts between the two countries.