Photo expo on king, encyclopedia on Saudi Arabia launched
Deputy Foreign Minister Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah tours around the photo exhibition on Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah after its launch in Riyadh on Sunday. (AN photo by Iqbal Hossain)
By MD RASOOLDEEN | ARAB NEWS
Published: Dec 5, 2011 00:12 Updated: Dec 5, 2011 01:09
RIYADH: Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah launched the maiden edition of the Saudi Arabia encyclopedia in Arabic and also opened a photography exhibition featuring pictures of the life of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah in Riyadh on Sunday.
The exhibition displayed a collection of 192 photographs of King Abdullah in various stages of his career till he took over the reins of Saudi Arabia.
The prince also opened a branch of the King Abdulaziz Library Services and Reading Rooms and the headquarters of the King Abdul Aziz Public Library in the capital.
During his tour of the exhibition, Prince Abdul Aziz, who is also a member of the KAAPL, appreciated the efforts of those involved.
Prince Mansour bin Nasser, adviser to King Abdullah, also attended the event sponsored by the KAAPL.
On arrival, the princes were received by Faisal bin Muammar, general supervisor of the KAAPL and Fahd Al-Sultan, general director of the encyclopedia.
Speaking to Arab News, Al-Sultan said the photographic exhibition clearly depicts the life of King Abdullah from his young days. “They have been arranged in chronological order for the visitors to get a glimpse into his past and present in an easy manner.”
Dwelling on the new encyclopedia, Al-Sultan described the edition as a marvelous achievement of a project undertaken by the library.
“The project started 10 years ago and around 250 Saudi researchers have contributed to the publication of this edition,” he said, adding that information is provided on all 13 provinces of the Kingdom.
“The aim is to provide a comprehensive, scholarly and informative body of material about the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, including all its regions based on exact information supported by photographs, maps and statistics,” Al-Sultan said, adding that it also provides a documented and encyclopedic work containing diverse information about the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to both Arab and international audiences and would serve as a reference for scholars, writers and the broader reading public.
The edition has more than 10,000 photographs and 160 maps of various parts of Saudi Arabia. It contains 20,000 pages in 20 volumes.
Al-Sultan said that the book would be initially distributed among libraries in the GCC region and in the Arab world. He also disclosed plans to translate the work into English and other world languages.
“The encyclopedia will be available on the Internet through a special website after one month. We also intend to translate it into major world languages in the near future,” he added.
He said the encyclopedia would give a good picture of the Kingdom and its important position at Arab, Islamic and international levels. The encyclopedia will be reprinted every five years to include new changes and developments. At the same time, it will be updated continuously on the website.
“Moreover, an updated encyclopedia on CDs will be made available every year,” he added.
Each volume includes information about archeology, historical sites and geography; natural wealth and agriculture; social patterns, customs and traditions; ancient and modern history; public utilities and services; cultural renaissance; achievements in development in the areas of infrastructure, education, culture, health care, industry, roads and transportation, trade and economy. It also includes photographs, explanatory maps and up-to-date statistics and highlights the role of the state in generously fulfilling all the needs and requirements of citizens to ensure their prosperity and happiness.