Iran's Persian congress kicks off
Iran's International Congress of World Teachers of Persian Language and Literature has opened at the University of Tehran, hosting 230 scholars from more than 50 countries.
Congress secretary Abbas-Ali Vafaei expressed hope that this year's congress would be quite different from the previous editions in all respects, adding that some 330 articles have also been submitted to the event and the abstract of 300 articles have been released in book form and distributed among the participants, Mehr News Agency reported.
The opening ceremony was attended by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's chief of staff Esfandiar Rahim-Mashaei, Iran's Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad Hosseini as well as Iranian and international poets and Persian language and literature professors.
"Persian language has a 1200-year history of written literary prose and poetry," said Hosseini during his speech.
He also announced new literary releases such as the works of great Iranian contemporary writers including the late Jalal Al-e Ahmad and Houshang Moradi-Kermani which will be published as a complete bibliography.
Rahim-Mashaei also delivered a speech during the ceremony saying that he is compiling a letter for the United Nations General Secretary calling for the Persian language to be recognized as an official language for conferences, assemblies and organizational ceremonies.
He also suggested a joint Persian language and literature academy to be established with Afghanistan and Tajikistan.
Iran's post-revolutionary literature, comparative literature and modern methods of Persian language teaching are among the main themes of the congress, Vafaei announced.
Scholars from Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Jordan, Uzbekistan, Turkey, the UK and Pakistan are among the participants of this year's event.
Iranian experts Kavous Hassanli, Mahmoud Ekramifar, Mohammad-Ali Bahmani and Erfan Nazarahari will deliver lectures during the congress.
Chairman of Iran's parliamentary cultural commission Gholam Ali Haddad Adel will make the event's closing speech on Wednesday, January 17, 2011, PressTV reported.