01 February 2023 09:29 PM

Cairo “The Capital of Islamic Culture 2022”

Wednesday، 06 April 2022 - 12:00 AM

Cairo is nominated to be the Capital of Islamic Culture for the year 2022, as it has been chosen by the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) for this year.

The celebration of Cairo as the capital of Islamic Culture for the year 2022 was scheduled to take place in 2020, but it was postponed for two years due to the exceptional circumstances imposed by the COVID- 19 pandemic.

On this occasion, Egyptian Minister of Culture Enas Abdel-Dayem and Director General of the ISESCO Salim bin Mohammad Al-Malik , announced the celebration of Cairo as the capital of culture in the Islamic world for 2022, during a press conference held at the Cairo Opera House’s Small Hall  on Tuesday  7 -12-2021.

The Minister of Culture Enas Abdel-Dayem said Cairo is a city of diversity and cultural richness reflecting many of the salient features of human civilisation in general and the Islamic civilisation in particular, as it has always been a meeting-point of civilisations, old and modern, and a unique centre of art, intellect, and creativity.

She further lauded the ICESCO’s role in support of the celebration, noting that the agenda contains 50 cultural events covering multilateral aspects featuring Egyptian culture and tradition.

For his part, Dr. AlMalik praised the cultural and civilizational assets that make Cairo a capital of culture in the Islamic world, notably its abundant tangible, intangible and natural heritage, noting that the city represents a major meeting point of various civilizations and an open world heritage museum displaying several ancient and modern monuments from different eras.

In addition to being home to numerous cultural institutions and hosting some of the most important cultural festivals and events, book fairs, and theatrical performances, Cairo also has several cultural facilities where intellectuals and artists can meet.


ISESCO is the Islamic World Organization for Education, Science and Culture. It operates under the auspices of the "Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). It is concerned with the fields of education, science and culture in addition to the communication between Islamic countries. It, also, works on strengthening ties between member states.

ISESCO's headquarters is located in Rabat, Morocco. The organization was founded in 1979, with 54 member-states. It adopts the program of the Islamic Capital of Culture, which is assigned annually to three Islamic cities, in addition to the capital that hosts the Islamic Conference of Culture Ministers that is held every two years.

The program aims to consolidate the relations between peoples. It seeks to highlight the rich Islamic heritage that enhances the concepts of tolerance and coexistence in the world as well as providing a true image of the deep-rooted Islamic civilization.

Reasons for choosing Cairo, the capital of Islamic culture

Cairo, the capital of Islamic culture, is one of the most important and largest heritage cities in the world. It includes a large number of monuments and antiquities from various Islamic eras, particularly mosques; the first of which was  Amr Ibn Al-Aas mosque. It was the first mosque built in Egypt and Africa. In addition to that, Cairo comprises Al-Azhar, the mosque and the university, Salah al-Din citadel, and the monuments of ancient Cairo. Thus, historians call it "the city of the thousand minarets".

On this occasion, the Egyptian Ministry of Culture prepares a varied cultural program that reflects the uniqueness of Egypt's character and the deep-rooted Egyptian capital.

The Celebration Agenda

The celebration will include several activities, including the production of a documentary film directed by Louay Galal, a film week for the countries of the Islamic world, cultural seminars for movies, and cinematic workshops for the online project "Start Your Dream" in the Islamic world.

There will also be the participation of a group of films: The Mummy – Egypt; Lion of the Desert, Omar Al-Mukhtar – Libya;  Fellagas – Tunisia; Chronicle of the Years of Fire – Algeria; West Beirut – Lebanon; Theeb – Jordan; and, The Dupes – Syria. 

The screenings will also include a group of the most important Arab cinema productions: Nasser Salah El-Din; Jamelia; Adieu Bonaparte; The Eloquent Peasant; and, Avant Les Pyramides.

There will be a group of symposia and evenings, including a cultural evening on "the aesthetics of Mamluk architecture… the Sultan Hassan Mosque as a model," several lectures and seminars on "Islamic architecture," a photography exhibition on "the aesthetics of historic Cairo" and panel discussions about Egyptian folklore and its impact on the countries of the Islamic world.

Children's activities will have a share of the celebration, including an exhibition of children's drawings under the title "Egypt in the Eyes of the Children of the Islamic world," the publication of a catalog of children's paintings under the title "Cairo in the Eyes of the Children of the Islamic world," and a coloring poster design of the most important monuments of Islamic Cairo, especially the area surrounding Al-Sayeda Zainab (the castle - the mosques - the fountains - the wall of Magra El-Ayoun).

The celebration will include various artistic events, including creative concerts for religious and spiritual chanting, an exhibition of reproductions of pictures of Egypt's mosques "consisting of pictures of a large group of mosques" dating back to 1920, a heritage competition in photography, an "exceptional session" about the countries of the Islamic world, and a lyrical performance of the operetta "Here is Cairo."

In addition, the celebration will present a theatrical show consisting of a collage of the most important religious works that have been produced in recent years, including works such as The Forty Rules of Love, As If You See It, The Owner of a Shrine, and various artistic concerts that combine music and singing. There will be Arab and Islamic Ramadan nights and evenings organized in cooperation with Arab and Islamic embassies in Cairo.

The events of the Fifth Academic Scientific Conference "Cairo Capital of Culture in the Islamic World" and the Cairo exhibition in the eyes of its artists will witness an international conference entitled "Cairo's Intangible Heritage over a Thousand Years," which aims to highlight the intangible heritage of the city of Cairo as a melting pot containing many elements of this living heritage.

There will also be photography and drawing exhibitions, a conference for the realization of heritage and the consolidation of identity, accompanied by a show of reproductions of the essential Islamic manuscripts preserved in Dar al-Kutub.  Also on the program will be a meeting in the cultural park for three days under the title "Children of the Islamic World in the Presence of Cairo," an exhibition of heritage crafts with the participation of many countries, and the Cairo International Art Forum Arabic calligraphy "seventh session."

Some activities and events will be conducted in heritage Cairo, re-presenting the show "Cairo in a Thousand Years," and presenting the theatrical performance "The Minarets of the Guardians" for three days. Moreover, the prizes will be announced for the “My Heritage” photography competition as well as the photo exhibition in the "exceptional session" for the countries of the Islamic world.

In addition to the activities, the Ministry of Culture will issue several publications on Cairo, The Capital of Culture in the Islamic world, in cooperation with the National Center for Translation. The Ministry will reissue the book "Cairo a Life Story of a Thousand Years 969 - 1969” which was printed by the late Minister of Culture Dr. Tharwat Okasha in six languages to celebrate the Millennium of Cairo: Arabic - English - French - Spanish - Russian – German.

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