As part of the arrangements for the celebration of Bukhara as the Asian region’s Islamic World Capital of Culture for 2020, the delegation of the Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) continued its visit to Uzbekistan. Today, they toured Imam Bukhari International Scientific Research Center (IBISRC) and the Madrasah (Sharia school) of Samarkand, Uzbekistan’s second largest city.
The delegation of Mr. Najib Rhiati, Director of Culture, Dr. Abdelilah Benarafa, Cultural Advisor to the Director General, and Bilel Chebbi, Programme Specialist at the Culture Directorate, discussed with the IBISRC Director the establishment of “ICESCO Regional Center for Manuscripts” to operate under the umbrella of IBISRC. Through training sessions, the future Center will allow IBISRC to build capacities in the conservation of rare manuscripts in the region as it is home to a large number of such heritage documents.
The delegation also visited the mill of manuscript paper where the manual method is still in use today. Officials at the mill said that the handmade paper is eye-friendly and maintains a life-span of 2000 years against maximum 100 years for industrial paper.
The officials of the Uzbek Ministry of Culture and the delegation agreed to inscribe the know-how and skills of the production of the Samarkand paper on the List of Intangible Heritage in the Islamic World.