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Members of British Parliament mark 175th anniversary of Abai

29 November 2020 12:39

LONDON. KAZINFORM An online event to mark the 175th anniversary of the great Kazakh poet and philosopher Abai Kunanbaiuly was hosted at the House of Lords of the British Parliament with the support of the Embassy of Kazakhstan in the UK and the Conservative Friends of Eurasia.

Speaking at the opening of the event, Lord Peter Lilly, member of the House of Lords and President of Conservative Friends of Eurasia, noted the growing importance of Kazakhstan as the United Kingdom’s partner. He also stressed that Abai’s role as a bridge between the cultures of the West and the East remains relevant to this day due to his time-tested wisdom, the Kazakh MFA’s press service reports.

Erlan Idrissov, Ambassador of Kazakhstan to the UK, stressed the importance of the participation of lawmakers in promoting a meaningful and mutually beneficial dialogue between Kazakhstan and the UK not only in the political and economic spheres, but also in the humanitarian and cultural domains. He noted that the upcoming parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan will give an additional impetus to the further enhancement of inter-parliamentary cooperation between the two countries.

Aktoty Raimkulova, Kazakhstan’s Minister of Culture and Sports, noted in her welcoming speech that despite the pandemic, Kazakhstan has been actively promoting Abai’s heritage abroad. Ahead of the 175th anniversary of the great Kazakh poet, his works were translated into 30 languages of the world, and as the nation’s cultural asset, Abai virtually presented a new Kazakhstan brand to the global community. The Minister also noted that the beginning of November this year saw the first ever complete collection of Abai’s works in English published by Cambridge University Press, the oldest publishing house in the world, in partnership with Kazakhstan’s National Bureau of Translations.

John Whittingdale MP, Minister of State for Media and Data in the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, noted the role of the British Council and Kazakhstan’s Bolashak international scholarship in promoting intercultural and educational dialogue between the two states.

Paul Scully MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and Minister for London, stressed that Kazakhstan remains the UK’s important trade partner and marked the progressive deepening of cooperation between the two states in political, trade and investment spheres.

Shaun Bailey MP for West Bromwich, and Botha Hopkinson, Chair and Co-Founder of the Conservative Friends of Eurasia, also spoke at the event.