|We feel at home with TIBF: Afghan publisher||
TEHRAN – An Afghan publisher says that he feels at home with the Tehran International Book Fair after three years of participation in the cultural event.
“We attended the TIBF for the first time in 2012,” Ahrary Publications Director Abdolhadi Ahrary told the Tehran Times on Thursday.
“Some Afghan publishers left the fair earlier to return to Kabul due to TIBF officials’ inappropriate behavior towards them at that time. However, the situation was much better in 2013,” he said.
This year, Afghanistan was the guest of honor at the book fair, which was held from May 1 to 10 at Tehran’s Imam Khomeini Mosalla.
“The fair is really a great opportunity for Afghan publishers to introduce Afghanistan’s culture and literature to Iranians,” he added.
He said that it is encouraging to see that the Afghan publishers were warmly received by their compatriots in Iran.
A fairly large number of people visited the section dedicated to the Afghan publishers.
“I believe that the stands dedicated to the Afghan publishers are not able to attract very many Iranian visitors as you can see, most of the visitors are Afghans,” said Bahar, a young Iranian woman who was visiting the section.
The Afghan publishers should use posters and other advertising materials to introduce their publications to non-Afghan visitors, she suggested.
Ru-Be-Farda, a major Afghan publishing institute also presented its latest offerings at the book fair this year, including a Dari-Persian dictionary.
Group Hadi Sajjadi was another Afghan publisher that participated at TIBF.
“Afghan migrants can achieve self-esteem with education and effort,” the director of the institute, Hadi Sajjadi, stated.
He said that the past generations of Afghan migrants were mostly workers, but today many young Afghans are university students in Iran.
Sardar Ahmad Ahmadi, a Tehran-based Afghan English teacher who has lived in Iran for 30 years, said that Afghanistan could make better use of the opportunity as a guest of honor.
“Media should reflect Afghan culture and its common history with Iran, however they only focus on negative aspects of the nation,” he lamented.
In his view, the event is a great step in promoting Afghans’ culture and literature in their neighboring country.
The aisle crowded with Afghan visitors and Iranians peeking through stands showed that Afghanistan was a welcomed guest, which henceforth should not abandon its enthusiasts.
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