Roundup: "China and I" writing contest brings Egyptian, Chinese cultures closer


CAIRO, Nov. 22 (Xinhua) -- A recently concluded "China and I" writing competition, which saw the participation of hundreds of Egyptian writers and others interested in the Chinese culture, has been considered by organizers and participants as part of the growing cultural exchange between the two ancient civilizations.

Organized by China Cultural Center (CCC) in Cairo in cooperation with Cairo-based Radio and Television Magazine and China Today Magazine, the second version of the Arabic language writing contest attracted some 380 competitors who wrote articles and short stories highlighting different aspects of the unique connection between Egypt and China.

"The competition has enhanced the friendship between China and Egypt in general and the relationship between the participants and China in particular," said Shi Yuewen, CCC chief and minister counselor for cultural affairs of the Chinese embassy in Egypt, in a video broadcast posted by the center.

For his part, co-organizer Khaled Hanafi, editor-in-chief of Egypt's Radio and Television Magazine, described "China and I" writing contest as "a title for the depth of the relationship between Egypt and China and their two great civilizations."

Two winners got the major prize, one won the first prize, two won the second prize, five won the third prize, 10 got the encouragement prize and 10 had the participation prize. Prizes were not shared but equally given to each co-winner.

The major prize of the competition was separately won by Egyptian novelist Mohamed Mohamed Mustagab for his article "Sadness Tends to be Kidding - Resemblance between Mustagab and Mo Yan" and Egyptian translator Nehal Ibrahim for her article "When Heart Becomes Tongue."

"In my article, I focused on what my late father, writer of the short story collection 'Sadness Tends to Be Kidding', and Chinese novelist and Nobel Prize laureate Mo Yan have in common, such as their lives and styles of writing," Mustagab told Xinhua.

He added that he was "overwhelmed by both happiness and surprise" when he knew he got the big prize, stressing that Egyptian-Chinese cultural interaction enriches humanity.

The winner of the first prize was Hossam el-Din Mohamed Wahban, an Egyptian naval engineer interested in literature as well as the Chinese culture, for his article "Shanghai and Music of Cities."

The second prize was separately awarded to Emad al-Azrak, Egyptian expert in Chinese affairs, for his article "Three Stops on Road to China" and Mostafa al-Saghir, director-general of Karnak temples in Upper Egypt's monument-rich city of Luxor, for his article "Get Ready You Will Travel to China."

In his article, Saghir highlighted different angles of the growing cooperation between Egypt and China, such as the first joint Egyptian-Chinese archeological mission that has recently been working on Montu Temple in the Karnak Temple Complex and the exchange of medical aid and expertise between Egypt and China regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.

The second "China and I" writing competition in Cairo was launched in April and the winners were announced in a ceremony earlier this week.

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