Irbid has a history of immigration due to its geopolitical location.
Qatar’s Minister of Culture Sheikh Abdulrahman bin Hamad Al-Thani was in Jordan on Sunday to celebrate ‘Irbid the Capital of Arab Culture 2022’.
“Today in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the ‘country of Nashama’, I had the pleasure of attending the launch of Irbid the capital of Arab culture 2022, and the cultural carnival and artistic ceremony that was held on this occasion,” tweeted Al-Thani.
The Qatari official described the Jordanian city of Irbid as “rich in its cultural diversity and human values”.
Al-Thani also met with Jordan’s Crown Prince Al-Hussein bin Abdullah II at the Al Husseiniya Palace.
According to state-owned Qatar News Agency (QNA), Al-Thani said the selection of Irbid as the capital of Arab culture is a reflection of the important presence of Jordan in Arab culture.
He also met with his Jordanian counterpart, Haifa Najjar before concluding his visit to Amman. Al-Thani thanked Najjar “for the genuine Jordanian hospitality” and wished “Jordan more cultural prosperity extending from its authentic history.”
Known as the “bride of the north”, Irbid was celebrated at Al Yarmouk University for its historical and cultural scenes, after it was selected as the capital of culture by the Arab League Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organisation (ALECSO).
Last year, the Palestinian city of Bethlehem was crowned the Capital of Arab Culture.
Irbid has a history of immigration due to its geopolitical location. According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the city is home to Palestinians, economic migrants, and Syrians.
Qatar the capital of culture
In 2010, Doha was selected as the Capital of Arab Culture and hosted various cultural performances at the time, attended by up to 1,200 officials in the cultural, political, and media field.
Last year, the Gulf state also celebrated ‘Doha Capital of Culture in the Islamic World 2021’ after being selected by the Islamic World Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (ICESCO).
The song was written by the late renowned Palestinian poet Harun Hashim Rashid, who passed away in 2020.
The song won the Golden Award at the 7th Cairo Festival for Radio and Television in 2001 and was remembered as one of Nasser’s most prominent hits. “Allah Ya Omri Qatar [Oh my beloved Qatar]” and “Oh Beirut” were also popular among the region.
Beyond highlighting the music scene in Doha, the song served as a subtle reminder of the importance of the Palestinian cause to Qatar, where officials have repeatedly expressed support to Palestinians living under illegal Israeli occupation.