Loulé Biennial shows off the strong cultural ties between Portugal and Morocco
The two countries are located on two different continents, but there is much in common between Portugal and Morocco. The African country was the guest of honour at the Iberian Heritage Biennial, which happened on Sunday, October 13th, in Loulé.
The Moroccan ambassador to Portugal explained that he has no doubt of the importance of showing how these two nations are “so close and have so much to develop together”. Othmane Bahnini attended the opening of the Biennial, last Friday, the 11th, in the city of Loulé.
In the exhibition space there was a whole area dedicated to Morocco, where there was no shortage of music and cultural crafts. The culture of this Maghreb country was exposed in multiple ways, and throughout the Biennial there were plenty of entertainment initiatives, such as two concerts with Moroccan musicians, which occurred on Saturday.
For the ambassador, Morocco’s strong presence at this event “is important to show visitors how close we are.”
“It also serves as a statement to young people who are unaware of this reality. We share so many things with the Algarve, culturally and historically. The idea is to demonstrate how we are friendly countries and can coexist despite our linguistic or religious differences,” he said in a statement to the press.
Regarding this, the Algarve, due to its proximity to Morocco, is seen as a strategic territory. “We can do many things with the region. I’ve been to the Algarve several times, making many contacts. There is a lot to do in agriculture and fisheries, for example, and we are already working on that,” the ambassador revealed.
“It is also, for me, an honour and a pleasure to represent my country, the Kingdom of Morocco, in this beautiful Algarve town, which, due to the mildness of its climate, the warmth of its men and women, and its beautiful nature, allows me to feel as if we are part of the same cultural space, human, not separated by the sea, but united by this Atlantic Ocean,” he added.
According to Ambassador Bahnini, the Biennale serves to “recall our proximity and the uniqueness of our two countries, symbols of openness, dialogue, tolerance and multicultural mixing”.
Vitor Aleixo, mayor of Loulé, did not forget the importance of the Moroccan presence at this Biennial. “The ambassador played a decisive role in the whole process. May these days be allow for a lot of sharing, learning, and building bridges for the future”, concluded the mayor.