CAIRO: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi presented the Order of the Nile, Egypt’s highest state honor, to United Arab Emirates’ Sharjah ruler Sheikh Sultan al-Qassemi Monday for supporting culture in Egypt.
On Sunday, Qassemi inaugurated a new branch of the National Archives of Egypt in Fustat, south east of Cairo, and donated 7,778 rare books to Egypt.
“The meeting [between Sisi and Qassemi] discussed various aspects and means to enrich cultural cooperation between Egypt and UAE, particularly with regard to exploiting and developing cultural palaces to guide young people’s energy,” a presidential statement read.
Qassemi, who received his university degree from Egypt, has occasionally funded cultural projects in Egypt, including the renovation of the historic Scientific Institute of Egypt.
The donated books Sunday will be displayed at the Scientific Institute of Egypt, which was burned down, along with dozens of priceless books, in violent clashes between the police and protesters near Tahrir Square in 2011.
Egypt and UAE relations, which only soured during the one-year Muslim Brotherhood regime, boomed after the 2013 ouster of President Mohamed Morsi. UAE pledged $4 billion in aid and investments during the March Egypt Economic Development Conference.