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Sharjah Ruler buys Dh4.5m worth of books from SIBF



Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, has allocated Dh4.5 million for the acquisition of the latest publications presented by 2033 Arab and international publishers during the ongoing 42nd edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair.

This initiative aims to furnish the public and government libraries in the Emirates with a diverse range of literary content. This endeavour is deeply rooted in His Highness’s vision to bolster the publishing industry in the region and worldwide, thereby strengthening the prospects and success of publishers.

Concurrently, it seeks to broaden the knowledge resources accessible to the communities of Sharjah and the UAE, encompassing readers, researchers, and students. Furthermore, it underscores the pivotal role of libraries in shaping a knowledge-based society and enhancing their contributions towards achieving a comprehensive and sustainable cultural renaissance.

Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, Chairperson of the Sharjah Book Authority, expressed, “The grant from His Highness is a continuation of Sharjah’s ongoing efforts to strengthen the publishing industry and enrich both public and government libraries. The support offered by the Sharjah Ruler each year enables publishers to continue to grow and expand. It also updates Sharjah’s libraries with new releases across genres of science, knowledge and literature, which enables them to better serve their members and visitors and continue fostering a knowledge-based society”.

She added, “SIBF has evolved into a holistic event that encompasses vital roles of book promotion, marketing as well as the enhancement of culture and knowledge-related activities. It has also emerged as a global platform that empowers publishers to overcome challenges through support, training, awards, and other resources. All these contributions have further solidified Sharjah’s appeal as a preferred destination for regional and international professionals in the book industry. Furthermore, the emirate’s libraries have become go-to destinations for students and researchers, owing to the wealth of knowledge and diverse range of books and publications they offer.”

The grant signifies a renewed commitment to support government and private libraries in the emirate, encompassing various scientific and literary disciplines in multiple languages. Each year, it enriches the libraries with thousands of new titles, further solidifying Sharjah’s reputation as one of the leading cities supporting initiatives for knowledge-based societies, actively contributing to the advancement of scientific research and the creation of substantial content.

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World’s best knights to descend in Dubai for Global Chess League



Hou Yifan, left, and Magnus Carlsen are among a stellar field for the inaugural Global Chess League.

The Tech Mahindra Global Chess League (GCL) have announced the complete list of players for the upcoming inaugural edition, to be held at the Dubai Chess and Culture Club from June 21 to July 2.

The GCL, in association with the Dubai Sports Council, will feature reigning world champion Ding Liren, the top-ranked chess player and five-time world champion Magnus Carlsen, five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand, and four-time women’s world champion Hou Yifan, among others.

Grandmaster Liren, said: “Global Chess League appeared to be a fantastic opportunity from the moment I heard about it. Not only is it an interesting format, but also, as an Icon player, I get to contribute to an exciting concept that will change the face of the chess world for years to come. Further, knowing that GCL will see participation from players worldwide, it will be a strong field, and I look forward to meeting all the players.”

A five-time world champion, and the reigning four-time rapid chess world champion, Carlsen’s peak Fide rating has been the highest in chess history. “Chess is played by many people worldwide, but it needs to catch up to other major sports as a spectator sport, and I am optimistic that GCL will contribute significantly to this.”

All teams will compete in a one-of-a-kind joint team format at GCL, with each team consisting of six players with a minimum of two women chess players per team. Besides Liren and Carlsen, four former world champions will add to the thrilling level of competition – 2021 rapid world champion Nodirbek Abdusattorov, 2008 blitz world winner Leinier Domínguez, three-time blitz world champion Alexander Grischuk, and Daniil Dubov (2018, rapid).

The league will also feature top female superstars, including Grandmaster (GM) Hou Yifan, the second highest-rated female player of all time. She was the youngest female player ever to qualify for the title of grandmaster at the age of 14.

There will be six teams with each accorded an icon player and two women players in the mixed-team GCL. The full list of icon players is yet to be finalised.

Yifan will be accompanied by WGMs Koneru Humpy, Harika Dronavalli, Kateryna Lagno, Alexandra Kosteniuk, Tan Zhongyi, Nana Dzagnidze, Bella Khotenashvili, Nino Batsiashvili, Irina Krush, International Master Polina Shuvalova, and 2018 European women’s champion in rapid chess, Elisabeth Paehtz.

Yifan said, “Global Chess League has already sparked widespread interest. GCL is certain to take the game in new directions and open doors, which have never been explored before. Chess fans all over the world are in for a treat.”

Six U21 players will also compete in the GCL, with the trio of Grandmasters, Praggnanandhaa R., Raunak Sadhwani, and Nihal Sarin, leading the pack of prodigies for India. GMs Jonas Buhl Bjerre, Javokhir Sindarov and chess prodigy GM Andrey Esipenko complete the list of players in the category.

ALSO READ: Anand sees ‘new beginning’ in Dubai with GCL

In addition to the players mentioned above, the GCL will feature several other superstars of chess, including Grandmasters Vidit Gujrathi, Gukesh D, Arjun Erigaisi, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Teimour Radjabov, Yi Wei, Yu Yangyi, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Richard Rapport, Kirill Shevchenko, Jan-Krzysztof Duda and Salem Salah.

Jagdish Mitra, the GCL board chairman, said, “Apart from being great players, all of them have been ambassadors for the game in their respective countries and worldwide. With them on board, GCL only adds another feather to its cap in becoming a true game changer for the chess ecosystem by introducing a mixed-team format in chess. This is a true testament to our belief in providing equal opportunities to all, regardless of gender.”


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UAE President: Empowering people of UAE is nation’s top priority and basis of future plans



President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan has said that the people of the UAE, and striving to empower them, has always been and continues to be the nation’s top priority. “Ensuring our people have everything they need to live fulfilled, comfortable, and happy lives, remains the basis of all our future plans,” His Highness said, while addressing the nation.

In his speech that was broadcasted today on local TV and radio channels, President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed said the UAE’s policy will continue to champion peace and stability in the region and the wider world, supporting others and advocating for wisdom and cooperation for the good of mankind.

His Highness stressed that the UAE will continue its work to strengthen cooperation and enable positive, respectful dialogue between countries to achieve stability and prosperity for all.

His Highness said that “the sovereignty and security of the UAE will remain a foundational principle that we will abide with, and we will not tolerate anything that could affect it. We extend the hand of friendship to all countries that share our values of peaceful coexistence and mutual respect, to achieve progress and prosperity.”

President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed also highlighted that the UAE is fortunate to have a nation of people, who, before and after the union, and even through difficult times, have proven their spirit and determination to overcome the toughest challenges. “Our pride in our people is infinite. Equally, we deeply appreciate the valued role of our residents who consider this country their second home, and their continued contributions in building and developing the UAE since its union,” His Highness said.

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