(MENAFN) In a significant step towards fostering cultural collaboration, Russian Culture Minister Olga Lyubimova met with her Libyan counterpart, Mabruka Togi Osman, during the United Cultures Forum in St. Petersburg. The discussions focused on expanding cooperation and exploring avenues for mutual cultural enrichment.
Lyubimova expressed optimism about the potential for cultural collaboration between Russia and Libya, emphasizing the rich diversity that both nations bring to the cultural landscape. During the meeting, she proposed enhancing student exchange programs, particularly in creative fields, and suggested the establishment of expert groups to facilitate the exchange of experience in the development of cultural institutions.
The Russian Culture Minister highlighted the willingness to welcome creative teams from Libya to participate in major cultural projects, competitions, and festivals supported by the Ministry of Culture of Russia. Reciprocally, she extended an invitation for Russian collectives, cultural figures, and craftsmen to showcase the depth of Russian culture in Libya.
The proposed student exchange initiatives and cultural collaborations are set to commence actively in 2024, with a specific focus on creative spheres. Both nations aim to intensify their cultural ties and prepare joint projects to commemorate the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations in 2025.
In addition to the discussions with Libya, Russia also signed cooperation agreements with Guinea, Djibouti, and Eritrea during the United Cultures Forum. These agreements signify a commitment to fostering cultural exchanges, tours, exhibitions, and participation in film festivals between Russia and these African nations.
This move aligns with Russia's broader cultural diplomacy efforts, as highlighted by the recent collaboration announcement between the Russian Institute of Theater Arts (GITIS) and the Grand Theater in Dakar, Senegal. Grigory Zaslavsky, the rector of GITIS, emphasized the importance of such collaborations, pointing to increased tours, exhibitions, and international festival participation as key outcomes.
The strengthening of cultural ties between Russia and African nations underscores the significance of people-to-people connections and cultural exchanges in fostering understanding and cooperation on the global stage. The initiatives announced at the United Cultures Forum exemplify the commitment of both Russia and Libya to building lasting partnerships that transcend geographical boundaries and contribute to the mutual enrichment of their respective cultural landscapes.
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