Video Message by Mr. Miguel Moratinos
The High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations
On the Occasion of
The International Day of the Arabic Language
Organized by the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
19 December 2022
At the outset, I wish to thank H.E. Amb Abdulaziz Al Wasil, The Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for inviting me.
I am a global citizen, born in Spain but have been exposed to almost all cultures and civilizations. The Arab culture is one of the closest to my heart. I have always had a great admiration to the Arabic language. The Spanish language derives 12% from Arabic.
The Arabic language is a pillar of the cultural diversity of humanity. It is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, used daily by more than 400 million people. World Arabic Language Day is celebrated every year on 18 December since 2012. The date coincides with the day in 1973 that the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted Arabic as the sixth official language of the Organization.
The occasion provides an opportunity to reaffirm the important role of the Arabic language in connecting people through culture, science, literature and many more domains.
It is a reminder of the historic role of the Arabic language in creating and transmitting knowledge, as well as in enhancing dialogue and building peace. For centuries the Arabic language was the common ground, the connector, that reflected the richness of human existence and provided access to numerous resources.
In this context, I commend the announcement of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in September 2020 to establish the King Salman International Complex for the Arabic Language, the first of its kind in its history, as it will serve Riyadh’s plan to support the Arab culture sector locally and internationally
and preserve the richness of this beautiful language.
I wish you all a successful event.