By Houda Mzioudet,
Tripoli 2 October 2013:
??A record 70,000 different books are on show at the International Tripoli Book Fair, which has . . .[restrict]drawn 400 publishers from 15 Arab and Western countries.
The fair, the eleventh to be held and the first since the Revolution, opened yesterday at the International Fairground in Tripoli with a ceremony attended by Prime Minister Ali Zeidan, Culture Minister Habib Mohammed Al-Amin and US Ambassador, Deborah Kay Jones. After listening to a performance of traditional Libyan music and a brass band, all three then went on to tour some of the stands.
The event, which runs until 10 October, is being supported by the Culture Ministry. Al-Amin said that the book fair marked the rebirth of culture in Libya after four decades of dictatorship. He emphasised the importance of books in the lives of young people. He also reiterated his ministry’s commitment to uphold the freedom of expression, stressing the end of the censorship that existed under the old regime. He also said that three new cultural magazines were being launched to mark the first fair since the Revolution.
This year, the fair includes for the first time a French section. Besides the book displays, throughout the ten day event, there will be a series of readings which will include poetry from Libyan and other Arab poets.