Sunday, 05 December 2021 04:48 GMT

Expo 2020 Dubai: War-ravaged Syria to showcase its ancient glory


(MENAFN- Khaleej Times) Syria may be etched in people's minds as a war-ravaged country in the Middle East. Its catastrophic civil war that began in 2011 had displaced millions of people and spawned one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world. Many of its cities like Aleppo, Palmyra and Idlib still lay in ruins as a chilling reminder of a decade-long conflict.

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But when you step into the Syrian pavilion at Expo 2020, the doom and gloom give way to evoke the ancient glories of a country that was once home to one of the oldest civilisations in the world.

Dr Ghassan Abbas, Syria's Ambassador to the UAE and Commissioner-General of the country's pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, said their participation in the mega event would take place under the theme, 'We Will Rise Together', which is inspired by Syria's history and future aspirations, according to a report by state news agency Wam.

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Located in the Mobility district, the pavilion will showcase a rich civilisation that contributed towards laying the foundations that connect the world as we know it.

Syria was home to the very first crop yield, alphabet, poem and musical notation, making its culture a treasure trove of history.

The pavilion will display a replica of the Ugaritic alphabet, believed to be the first alphabet in history, dating back to around 1,400 BC.

It will also take its guests on a journey through the development of writing and the alphabet in several areas across Syria.

Visitors will be able to see the alphabet's impact and the influence of Arabic on many other languages around the world.

They will learn more about words of Arabic origin that are now present in other languages, highlighting that“what unites us is greater than what divides us.

There will also be an audiovisual interactive experience in which visitors can take part in singing and playing mankind's oldest musical notation, which was written in Ugarit more than 3,500 years ago.

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Other attractions include a group exhibition for Syrian artists entitled 'I Am Syrian'. It will showcase artworks that each represent a portrait of a Syrian face, highlighting the similarities that humans share and how, together, people can create a brighter future for Syria and the whole world. Each face displayed in the exhibition will tell an individual story, and all artworks will have a unified signature by the artists saying 'I am Syrian'.

Anjana Sankar Anjana Sankar is a UAE-based journalist chasing global stories of conflict, migration and human rights. She has reported from the frontlines of the wars in Yemen and Syria and has extensively written on the refugee crisis in Bangladesh, Iraq and Europe. From interviewing Daesh militants to embedding with the UAE army in Yemen, and covering earthquakes, floods, terrorist attacks and elections, she has come out scathe-free from the most dangerous conflict zones of the world. Riding on over 14 years of experience, Anjana currently is an Assistant Editor with Khaleej Times and leads the reporting team. She often speaks about women empowerment on her Facebook page that has 40,000 plus followers.

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