Dr. Muhammad Kafi, President of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad had a speech in the opening ceremony of the Third Nations Culture Festival on Monday, April 17 among the ambassadors, foreign guests and also provincial officials. The full text of his speech:
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Welcome to Ferdowsi University of Mashhad and the third Nations’ culture festival. Culture is the differentiating factor among human beings and also the sharing point of mankind. Ethnic, racial, geographical, political and linguistic differences have never prevented close interactions among various nations, since communities and nations establish relationships with each other based on their cultural and humanistic commonalities. Indeed, science is a shared language among nations. It is a utopia with the vastness of the universe which removes all political and geographical borders and disregards all the existing racial, religious, linguistic and class differences. The rule of science is universal and it is a true symbol of freedom and democracy in the world. Universities are the symbol of science. We strongly believe that science is the heritage of all the members of mankind throughout history and universities belong to all the people in the world.
We are now at Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, the doors of which are open to every human being. Enjoying 68 years of shining history, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad is not only proud of having a large number of distinguished professors and reaching the high peaks of knowledge, but becoming international is also another honor for this university. The existence of an international university in an international city which has been selected as the cultural capital of the Islamic world in 2017 provides the opportunity for more cultural interactions among different communities and nations worldwide. I and the other 25 thousand members of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad including professors, students and staff members are proud to share the pleasure for studying and researching at this beautiful university with over one thousand four hundred (1400) students from 20 countries.
The nations’ culture festival is held for the third consecutive year at Ferdowsi University of Mashhad. It is the celebration of being together among people who have gathered in this university for a single goal, that is science. The presence of these students at Ferdowsi University of Mashhad and enduring the hardships of studying abroad is itself highly valuable to us and adds to our responsibility to provide them with the best possible facilities and services. Ensuring of the satisfaction, happiness and security of the international students of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad is one of our main goals. We believe that the international students of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad are the representatives of their home countries and after returning back, they would transfer the message of friendship, brotherhood and equality of the Iranian people and the noble Iranian culture to their fellow countrymen.
Today, at this pleasant atmosphere, many university presidents and cultural and political figures from different neighboring countries are present. I have to note that the great Asian continent and this region which has been named as Middle East and central Asia, has played an important role in the history and culture of mankind. Not long ago, the great Khorasan which has now been divided into many neighboring countries was the intersection of economic, cultural and academic interactions. We strongly believe that the time is ripe to revive those close ties and vivify the academic and historical role of this region on an international scale.
In this region of the world, most of the major resources and development infrastructures are available. Unfortunately, the region is currently considered as one of the less-developed parts of the world. The best way for the flourishment and development of this region is to have trust in young students who would be future researchers, and to establish friendship and amity among them.
Again, I sincerely thank all the dear guests who accepted the invitation of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, endured the hardships of longsome journeys and marked their presence at this international festival. I also need to thank public and private sector managers, and the heads of several guilds and industries who have contributed to the better holding of this festival.
I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to my dear colleagues at the headquarters of the nations’ culture festival at Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, the International Students’ office and other active sectors in the university who have prepared themselves from several months ago to host the guests as best as possible.
The booths settled at the festival site have been arranged, equipped and decorated by the international students of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad. I appreciate their efforts and express my thanks to all these dear students.
The high standards for this festival have been set by Dr. Ghanaei, the head of the International Students’ office at Ferdowsi University of Mashhad and a truly honorable man. I sincerely wish him health and ever-increasing success.
I wish you all a pleasant stay at Mashhad and Ferdowsi University. Please forgive your hosts for any possible shortcomings. Despite all our limitations, we really wanted you to be with us at this international festival.
Let us hope that one day, with the cooperation and help of a new generation of university graduates, peace, justice and development would be realized all across the world, especially in the region which we all belong to.