TAIF – On behalf of King Abdullah, Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, Emir of Makkah and Chairman of the Higher Supervisory Committee for Souq Okaz, opened the fourth cultural activities of Souq Okaz festival here Tuesday.
The festival, “Souq Okaz – Point of Life Gathering,” offers poetry sessions, performances of music and traditional dances, demonstrations of Bedouin handicraft, and lots of opportunities to shop for unique items.
Souq Okaz, which Prince Khaled Al-Faisal revived in 2008 under the patronage of King Abdullah, is the rebirth of an ancient Arabian festival that dates back to the pre-Islamic era. In those times, Arab traders and Bedouins brought perfumes, spices, rugs, handicraft and other goods to sell in the market, which became an economic and cultural center.
Arabs from throughout the Arabian Peninsula would meet there for competitions in poetry, which is in the history and the soul of the Arabs. In ancient times, they used it more than any other literary form to express their emotions.
Prince Kahled and other officials toured the kilometer-long venue, where he visited shows that depict traditional handicrafts, a street theater and other activities.
Prince Khaled was received at the event by Prince Faisal Bin Abdullah, Minister of Education and Dr. Abdul Aziz Khoja, Minister of Culture and Information. They both are members of the Higher Supervisory Committee.
Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Muammar, Governor of Taif, and other senior officials were also present.
Prince Khaled was accompanied by Prince Sultan Bin Salman Bin Abdul Aziz, chief of the Saudi Commission of Tourism and Antiquities. – SPA