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  • Faithful to my Homeland, the Republic of Poland

     

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    Visit from the Speaker of the Senate Bogdan Borusewicz in Jordan

    On the 12th - 13th June 2009, the Polish Senate Speaker Bogdan Borusewicz visited Jordan during his official visit in the Middle East (before Jordan he travelled to Egypt, Israel and Palestinian Autonomy). During the first day of the visit he met with Polish representatives (about 100 people) in the Polish Embassy. In honour of him a piano music concert was organized. During the meeting the chief of the first Polish Association In Jordan, established in May 2009, Mrs. Maria Halaseh, informed about the Association establishment and passed to Mr. Borusewicz its official statute.

    During the second day of the visit in addition to the debate prepared by the Czech Presidency, he met with the leader of the lower Parliament Chamber Mr. Abdulhadim Majali and the leader of the Palestinian National Council Mr. Salim Za'noun. Mr. Borusewicz met also with the leader of Jordanian Senate Mr. Z

    iyad Al Rifai. During the conversation with Mr. Z. Al-Rifai, they discussed mainly about the Middle East situation in the context of the election in Iran and also about the Polish - Jordanian relations. During the meeting with Mr. A. Majali in Jordanian Parliament, they discussed mainly about the possibility of more involvement of the EU countries in the Middle East conflict solution.

     

    Mr. Borusewicz's meetings with the Jordanian establishment are widely commented on by local media, including the I TV, Petra agency, the newspapers Al-Rai and Al-Dustour.   

     

    Meeting of Chargé d'Affaires of Poland Mr. Krzysztof Bojko with representatives of the Jordanian media

    On 20 May 2009 in Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Amman a meeting of Chargé d'Affaires of Poland Mr. Krzysztof Bojko with representatives of the Jordanian media was held. K. Bojko said that the main purpose of his mission in Jordan is  to improve and deepen Polish-Jordanian relations both in terms of political, economic and cultural-scientific community. One of the priorities is increase in trade between the two countries. An important aspect of its activity will be also increasing the exchange of cultural and scientific cooperation in the promotion of Polish and Jordanian universities. He added that  Poland, like other EU countries, with equally good relations with Arab states and Israel will support all initiatives leading to peace in the Middle East. He declared that he and the other embassy staff are looking forward to any contacts with the Jordanian media

     

    The Regional Conference of Economical Councillors from the North African and Middle Eastern Countries

    Between the 8th and 9th May 2009, the The Regional Conference of Economical Councillors from the North African and Middle Eastern Countries took place in Amman, organized by Polish Embassy in Jordan and the Department of Foreign Economical Policy of the Ministry of  Foreign Affairs. The following countries participated in the conference: Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Qatar, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunis and the United Arab Emirates Polish Ambassador Robert Rostek from Qatar and Charge d'Affaires Stanisław Smoleń from Iraq took part in the conference. Charge d'Affaires Krzysztof Bojko and the councilor Janusz Janke took part on behalf of the Polish Embassy and on the behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs the Director of DZPE Wojciech Ponikiewski and the Deputy of the Director DZPE Grzegorz Gawin attended.  

    The Polish businessmen and contractors were represented by vice-director of management Oil Mining  PGNiG Waldemar Wójcik, Director of the Research Office PGNiG Andrzej Maksym, the Deputy of the General Director LOTOS S.A. Group Adam Loewe, the Councilor of International Affairs of PKN ORLEN Wojciech Wróblewski and the President of the Business Centre Club Convent Wojciech Warski and the Economical Expert BCC Wojciech Szewko. The main topic of the debate was energetic security. The representatives of the diplomatic posts from Qatar, Libya, Algeria and Saudi Arabia discussed the possibilities of  bilateral cooperation between Poland and the countries of its accreditation in the energetic sector. Delegates from the companies LOTOS and PKN ORLEN presented the activity of their companies. The Deputy of Director DZPE MSZ presented main tasks of the diplomatic posts in the aspect of cooperation with companies as an element of economical diplomacy. The representatives of the BCC presented their expectations of the diplomacy of the economical self-government.

    The councilors of the Polish diplomatic posts in Cairo and Amman discussed their experiences of cooperation between Polish, Egyptian and Jordanian companies and they informed about the ways of support offered by the diplomatic posts for businessmen interested in the regional markets. In the summing-up discussion it had been highlighted that  the exchange of  ways of actions in the range of economical diplomacy allow us to better know the conditions of the economical cooperation between Poland and the North African and Middle Eastern countries. The barriers which make difficulties in increasing the economical cooperation with the region were acknowledge by Polish businessmen as a very essential issue.

    At the end of the conference the participants took part in a function organized by the Polish Embassy  in honour of the Day of the Polish Community. Many Polish university absolvents, the Polish Community representatives and Polish journalists, who came to Jordan because of  Pope Benedict XVI's visit, attended.

     

    Utterance of Chargé d'Affaires of the Republic of Poland in Amman, Mr. Krzysztof Bojko for Radio Vatican on 8 May 2009  for the occasion of the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Jordan 

    "According to the felt Mr. Krzysztof Bojko Chargé d'Affaires of the Republic of Poland in Amman, the visit of His Holiness the Pope at this time can bring a lot to the Middle East. „Given the tensions that exist in the region since 2000, since the outbreak of the second intifada, we all hope, including the Jordanian authorities , that this visit will  lead to a reassuring situation. I was witness to the events of March 2000, when Pope John Paul II visited Israel and the Palestinian Authority areas. From this visit until the outbreak of intifada situation really had improved. So we expect that now, after the arrival of Benedict XVI to the Middle East, the situation will be to reassuring. Certainly it comes to improving the situation between Christians and Muslims - Krzysztof  Bojko added."

     

    Anti-personnel mines - weapons of the past

    By HRH Prince Mired Bin Raad Al Hussein,  16/09/2008

    By signing the Ottawa Convention, Poland has agreed not to produce anti-personnel mines. But so far not it is daring enough to ratify the treaty - writes the Jordanian prince HRH Mired Bin Raad Al Hussein .

    My mission to Poland of last month took place at an important time. I came to Poland to encourage its leaders to get rid of anti-personnel mines once and for all. This happened at a time when international events drew more attention to Poland in the affairs of its security and defence.

    It's time  for  the last step

    Was my mission doomed not to be carried out successfully, therefore.? Was my mission impossible? I think not. Regardless of the recent events, it is time, in which Poland should give up arms completely unnecessary in their military arsenals.

    While being in Poland, I was able to find out more than ever that one of the main values in this country is to  keep up with  modernity. This does not mean less attention to the matters of national security. However, it should be done in accordance with the highest standards of humanitarian conduct in today's world.

    In principle,  Poland acknowledges that anti-personnel landmines is a weaponry from the time past, so they  have   decided  not to produce and not to export such weapons. Poland  also committed itself not to apply the anti-personnel landmines during the missions carried out by them abroad. But they  had not enough courage  required to make the last step,  as it has been done by   a number of other countries that  signed the Ottawa Convention of 1997 on the prohibition of antipersonnel landmines. Becoming the 157th signatory to the Convention, Poland could contribute to the sustainable end of the era marked by the victims and sufferings caused by the use of anti-personnel mines.

    The suffering of civilians

    Would the adoption of this convention harm the security of the country?  In no case. In recent conflicts, which erupted in the world, the lack of anti-personnel mines does not alter in the slightest their development and did not harm  any of the parties. This type of weapons has become simply useless while the effect of its use is an inexpressible suffering of civilians and local communities, which may last for years and decades.

    Modern Poland, which I  met, is well aware of this case and proves that they intend to build their   national security in the twenty-first century on the basis of precise weapons systems and early warning systems. Such security will be the result of participation in alliances and diplomacy, dialogue and cooperation rather than brutal use of force.

    Poland, which I saw,  is an  impressive place. Not only adapting to change, but also designating their lines. It is a country sharing the  values of the signatory countries to the Ottawa Convention, which provides a detailed plan to resolve forever the problem of anti-personnel mines.

    I'm looking forward to the day when Poland officially has joined our action.

    The author comes from the  Royal Family of Jordan. He is  chairing  the Eighth Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on the prohibition of anti-personnel mines. He graduated from the British Royal Military Academy - Sandhurst. Previously, he  served in the Jordanian Army, in its special forces and military intelligence. It is also a graduate of Strategic Studies at Tufts University in the United States. He  has got a degree in philosophy at the University of Cambridge.

    Rzeczpospolita

    http://www.rp.pl/artykul/191364.html

     

    Will a prince remove landmines from Poland?

    By Jacek Przybylski, Rzeczpospolita Daily,  26-08-2008

    Jordanian  Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein came to Warsaw to find out why Poland still maintains one million anti-personnel landmines.

    The prince  is trying to persuade representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of National Defence, that Poland eventually  ratify the Ottawa Convention, signed in 1997. Our country is in fact - along with  the Marshall Islands - the only signatory country, which still has not been able to do this. There are 156 countries - parties to the Convention that have destroyed millions of their landmines.

    After almost 11 years we still hear from the Polish authorities that the convention will be ratified until 2015, because the landmines are part of a system to defend Polish territory - explains Ms. Lidia Szafaryn from the Polish Red Cross. Our army now has nearly one million anti-personnel landmines, but for three years we habe been applying a moratorium on their use.

    In the EU there is still another  exception, Finland, which has neither signed nor ratified the convention, but committed itself to do it by 2011 - Ms. Lidia Szafaryn stresses.

    Rzeczpospolita: Around the world there are many countries which do not fully comply with the Convention on the prohibition of the use and storage of anti-personnel landmines: Chad, Thailand, Zimbabwe. Why did Your Royal Highness come just to Poland to discuss the demining?

    Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein: What differs Poland from these countries is that they have not only signed the convention but they do  implement it. Poland has signed the Convention, yet it has not ratified it. I came  to Warsaw to ask why.

    As chairman of the 8th Meeting of States Parties to the Ottawa Convention I am obliged to promote a ban on the use of anti-personnel landmines. So,  I  encourage governments  to reconsider the matter.

    Rzeczpospolita: The risk of the use of landmines by Poland is small. While the Russians recently have formed some minefields. Will Your Royal Highness  be going to Moscow?

    Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein: Russia is not a party to the convention. Of course, the prohibition of the use of landmines should be universally applied. We shall be   persuading everyone not to use these weapons.

    Rzeczpospolita: As a graduate of strategic studies in the U.S. and British military colleges,   don't you  have, Your Royal Highness,  the impression that the mission, which you have undertaken, it is not feasible?

    Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein: It is difficult to expect that Russia, China and the U.S. forget about the so cheap and simple to use weapons.

    Of course, there are countries which are difficult to convince. But have succeeded so many times. 156 countries are already parties to the Convention, many of them destroyed a number of anti-personnel mines. The weapons can really get rid once and for all. For me it is also a personal matter: I have many friends who fell victim of anti-personnel mines. One of them - a sapper - lost his hands and eyes. He is 31 years old and requires care as a child. His mother has to do everything to him. This is terrible. One of my colleagues lost his legs. Fortunately for him, he has  managed to return to normal life. Often, anti-personnel landmines not only make you crippled, but they are the cause of poverty and social rejection.

    Rzeczpospolita: You were, Your Royal Highness,  member  the special forces. Do you consider from the military point of view the anti-personnel mines as an effective weapon?

    Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein: On the contrary. I think that today on the battlefield they are totally ineffective. Supposedly, they can be used for a kind of psychological deterrence, but for modern, well-trained army they do not represent a larger problem. Without a special training, you can find many ways to overcome a minefield.

    Rzeczpospolita:  So why the Russians have put the landmines on the  Georgian land?

    Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein:  You have to ask the Russians. anti-personnel landmine is a terrible weapon, which - with regard to   thousands of  human beings wounded and killed by them -  could be considered weapons of mass destruction. Morever,  And there are wasted billions of dollars spent on their production, setting and then disarming land mines -  several times more expensive than their creation - and to help the victims.

    Interview made by: Jacek Przybylski, Rzeczpospolita Daily

    http://www.rp.pl/artykul/181913.html

     

    Condolences

    Professor Bronisław Geremek died in a car accident in Poland on 13th July 2008.

    Prof. Geremek, former Minister of Foreign Affairs (1997-2000), member of the Polish Parliament and the European Parliament was an outstanding statesman, one of the leaders of the "Solidarity" movement, an architect of the political changes in Poland and Europe.

    A book of condolences was opened for signatures at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Amman on 16thJuly .

     

    Concert of "Levant Quartet" in Anjara

    On the occasion of inauguration  of  children's library, a concert of classical music took place at Anjara, near Ajloun, on 22 February 2008. The library was established by the Polish Embassy, in the framework of the Polish Aid programme. The concert was given by  a  string quartet "Levant". Its members: Mrs. Anna Nazzal (1st violin, Poland), Mr. Nabih Boulos (2nd violin, Jordan), Mr. Fadi Hattar (cello, Jordan), Mr. Firas Hattar (viola, Jordan)  are associated with  the National Music Conservatory of Amman and  the Amman Symphony Orchestra.

    Their repertoire included the following compositions: Ludvig van Beethoven - Ode to Joy, Antonio Vivaldi - Concerto in A Minor, Camille Saint-Saens - Ave Verum Corpus, Johann Sebastian Bach - Badinerie, Georg Friedrich Händel - Chamber Suite in D Major, Gabriel Faure - Apres un Reve, Stanislaw Moniuszko - Un ballo campestre e sue conseguenze.

    The performance took place at the local Church  of Our Lady of the Mountain. It was  attended by HRH Prince Mired bin Ra'ad, Governor of Ajloun Ali Al Shara'a,  H.E. Mr. Mamdouh Zghoul, Mayor of Greater Ajloun, members of  diplomatic corps accredited in Jordan, Jordanian sponsors who contributed to the library project, some representatives of the Polish community in Jordan as well as  a large  number of Anjara inhabitants.

    The concert emphasized the importance of  the first Polish Aid project in Jordan. Furthermore, it was a promotion of arts in the governorate of Ajloun.

    February 2008

    Piotr Bargłowski

     

     

    Christmas Tree 2008

    Christmas Tree Event On Thursday 17th January a New Year's event for the Polish community took place at the Polish Embassy in Amman. The event  was organized in co-operation with Family International Community Services (FICS) organization -  a private, self-supporting, charitable organization, which prepared  artistic program of the evening.

    Our guests (about 80 persons) had an opportunity to see two performances, dancing and singing shows. The first performance was supposed to make the audience  aware of fact  that the most important thing in our live is love - not money. Next we admired dancing skills the youngest artists in a song " One thousand Christmas lights" and a group of girls who were dancing to the song "Three Kings".

    Afterwards, we could watch  boys dancing to a song "Boy, who played tambourine". In the next part of the evening, there was presented the  second performance entitled "The Man Who Missed Christmas",  we had an occasion to feel once more a real Christmas atmosphere. It was a true story about a man who hated Christmas and always treated  people meanly. He was punished  for his bad behaviour and was locked in  a bank safe by accident. He spent there Christmas Eve, without water and food. Sitting locked in the safe he could think  over his rude behaviour  and change his attitude  to Christmas and people. At the end of  artistic part of event,  we had an opportunity to admire jugglery artists. Applause of the audience left no doubts that the audience liked artistic programe prepared by FICS  very much. Parents unanimously emphasized that the biggest impression made on them dancing skills of  our artists.

    For our youngest guests we prepared a surprise - from cold Poland Santa Claus came to our Embassy with a big bag of presents. Because our kids were very brave the whole year  all of them received from St. Clause a present. The most brave of them was Klara, who sang a song dedicated to the St. Claus.

    At the and of the evening there was a disco, where  dancing skills were presented not only by the youngest but also a little bit older part of our Polish diaspora society.

    The artistic program prepared  by FICS members had been earlier presented  in a  few Jordanian schools and in  refugee camps. As it was emphasized by one of  the organizers, Mr. Mark Dieter Thamm  the aim of  this performance is on the one hand to give happiness  for  kids and on the other hand to build bridge between communities. Certainly both of this aims have been achieved .

    January 2008

    Karolina Andrzejczak
    Student of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan

     

    Pilgrimage to the Baptism Site

    On the 11th of January 2008 Jordanian Catholics celebrated Epiphany Day by taking part in the annual pilgrimage to the Baptism Site. The ceremony, attended by approximately four thousand believers, took place at Wadi Kharrar on the East bank of Jordan, where it is believed Jesus Christ was baptized. This time the mass was celebrated by Yasser Ayyash, bishop of the Greek Catholic Church with the participation of Roman Catholic Bishop of Amman Salim Sayegh. Apart from the participation of priests from particular parishes, leading organized groups of believers from different parts of Jordan, there were also clergymen representing other Christian confessions as well as some members of the diplomatic corps including the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland in Amman H.E. Mr. Andrzej Biera.

    At the place, where the Roman Catholic Church is planned to be built, the crowds of believers prayed together for the future of the Catholic Church in Jordan, for the country and the King and for the peace in the Middle East. Together they sang religious hymns. Later, parts of the Gospel were read and people listened to the homily preached by Bishop Ayyash in which he referred to the baptism as an important factor connecting the earthly life with the heavenly one. Next, the pilgrims went in the procession to the bank of the river, where the bishops blessed the water taken from the Jordan River and sprinkled it on the gathered believers giving them the pastoral blessing.

    Epiphany Day is celebrated in Jordan according to the Gregorian and Julian calendar. The latter ceremony is organized by the Greek Orthodox Church, the Armenian Church and the Coptic Church. During Epiphany Day, believers from Western churches remember the visit of the Three Kings, while the Eastern churches concentrate on baptism of Jesus and God's confession that Christ is His Son (because of that they use the name Teophany). By this celebration Christians commemorate God's manifestation as man to people.

    The Baptism Site is now not only an archeological, tourist and pilgrim site but a gigantic building area. There, on this uninhabited wide piece of land, a few churches are being built, among them the Greek Orthodox Church (already finished), a Roman Catholic Church, which is planned to be one of the biggest catholic places of worship in the Middle East, a stylish Coptic Church and a vast Pilgrim's House (a part of the Russian Orthodox Church). The Jordanian government gave particular churches grounds under their projects near the Jordan River. The government allowed the churches to buy the building materials tax-free. A special commission, taking care of the Baptism Site itself, is monitoring the project (http://www.baptismsite.com/). The end of the building projects is planned in 2009. Then, clergymen and nuns will come there to stay and the site will be open for pilgrims from all over the world 24 hours a day. 

    January 2008
    Karolina Rak, student of the Jagellonian University of Cracow

     

    Al Hussein Society  Bazaar

    Under the patronage of His Royal Highness Prince Raad Bin Zaid, the Annual Charity Bazaar of  Al Hussein Society  was organized on 15th December 2007. His Royal Highness, accompanied by his spouse Princess Majda, inaugurated this event at Le Royal Hotel in Amman.

    More than 50 diplomatic missions as well  clubs for foreign ladies participated in the event. Being there, they  provided substantial support  to Al Hussein Society which  has been running its humanitarian activities in Jordan since 1971. The main task of the Society is the rehabilitation of handicapped children by physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, educational activities, psychological and social consulting and providing necessary care after orthopedic surgeries. Al Hussein Society, in cooperation with some international non-governmental organizations, is providing special physiotherapy and educational programs for more than 1000 children mainly from  Palestinian refugees camps and remote rural areas. Proceeds of the annual charity event cover the needs of physically challenged children remaining under Al Hussein Society care.

    In an interview with the Jordan News Agency Petra HRH Prince Raad said that Al Hussein Society has an  excellent standing among other international organizations of this sort. Prince Raad expressed his hope that the Society would get enough  financial support in order to acquire a broad  recognition from the people in the country.

    Annual Bazaar of Al-Hussein Societycreated a good opportunity  for many of its participants to offer a variety of their national products and cuisine specialties. Over 70 arranged stalls were representing different countries which have their diplomatic missions in Amman. They offered products such as cakes, traditional food,  folkloric souvenirs typical for the culture of each country, as well as Christmas decorations.

    At the Polish stall handmade  products were available,  supplied by members of the Polish Ladies Club, such as Christmas angels, table covers, folkloric pictures ands crystal souvenirs.  Many Bazaar buyers were looking there for delicious sweets from the renowned Polish producers Solidarność and Wedel, as well as  for homemade  gingerbreads and other Christmas cakes.

    The revenue from the sales at  Polish Embassy's stall amounted  270 JD. It has been  transferred to the account of Al Hussein Society.

    The Polish Embassy in Amman expresses the  warmest thanks to all volunteers from the Polish community whose efforts  contributed to our first and successful participation of in this charity event.

    December 2007
    Katarzyna Jaworowska

     

    Speaker of the Senate of the Republic of Poland pays official visit to Jordan

    From 5 to 8 September 2007, the Speaker of the Senate of the Republic of Poland, H.E. Mr. Bogdan Borusewicz, paid an official visit to Jordan at the invitation of the President of the Senate of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, H.E. Zeid Rifai. The previous meeting at this level took place three years ago, in September 2004, when the President of Jordanian Senate was received in Poland.

    H.E. Mr. Bogdan Borusewicz was accompanied by a delegation of  4 senators: Mr. Stanisław Kogut, Deputy Chairman of the National Economy Committee, Member of the Family and Social Policy Committee, Member of the Polish-Jordanian Parliamentary Group; Mr. Tomasz Misiak, Deputy Chairman of the National Economy Committee; Mr. Stanisław Karczewski, Deputy Chairman of the Health Committee, Member of the Local Government and State Administration Committee, Member of the Polish-Jordanian Parliamentary Group; Mrs. Mirosława Nykiel, Member of the National Economy Committee and of the European Union Affairs Committee, as well as by officials of the Chancellery of the Senate

    During the visit, the 4th Polish Jordanian Business Forum "Poland Closer" took place in Jordan. It was organized under the joint patronage of the Polish and  Jordanian Senates' speakers. The Speaker of the Polish Senate was accompanied on his trip to Jordan by Under-Secretary of State of the Ministry of Economy H.E. Mr. Andrzej Piotrowski and some other senior officials: from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Sport and Tourism, Polish Tourist Organization, Polish Information and Investment Agency, Adam Mickiewicz Institute, and by a group of 30 Polish business people led by Secretary General of the Polish Chamber of  Commerce Mr. Marek Kłoczko, as well as by a team of journalists. The Senate delegation attended the opening ceremony of the forum, where the Jordanian Minister of Industry and Trade, H.E. Mr. Salem Khazaaleh and the Polish Vice Minister of Economy, H.E. Mr. Andrzej Piotrowski delivered addresses.

    The delegation was received by King Abdullah II Bin Al Hussein,  Prime  Minister Dr. Marouf Bakhit, and held  bilateral talks with their counterparts in the Senate of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. In the Red Sea port town  of Aqaba, where the second part of the Polish Jordanian Business Forum took place, the delegation was received by the governor Mr. Samir Mobaideen and representatives of the Aqaba Special Economic Zone.

    After having completed their official talks in Amman, the Speaker and the accompanying senators met at the Polish Embassy with some representatives of the Polish community in Jordan. There was an occasion for presenting a gift from the Polish Senate: a collection of  recently  published books, both of Polish contemporary literature and useful textbooks for children. Furthermore, the delegation attended a concert of Polish classical music performed by the Levant String Quartet, an international group of 4 musicians from Poland, Great Britain, Switzerland and Jordan.

    The official visit of the Polish Senate delegation to Jordan was very condensed, due to the coordination of its programme with the Business Forum. The visit was widely covered by the Jordanian media: all the local daily papers published reports and pictures from the welcoming ceremony, the meeting with his Majesty the King, the meeting with the Prime Minister and talks in the Senate. A few days earlier, the local press published an interview with the Polish Ambassador to the Kingdom announcing the coming visit. The high level of media attention reflected the importance of this occasion for political relations between Jordan and Poland, as well as to a larger Jordanian - European audience. Reporting the meeting between His Majesty the King and H.E. Mr. Bogdan Borusewicz, the leading daily newspaper "Al Ra'i" had as the headline of its weekend edition: "The King stressed the importance of European links to bring about peace".

    September 2007
    AB

     

    Concert of "Levant Quartet"

    On 6 September 2007 a concert of Polish classical music took place at the Radisson SAS Hotel in Amman. The performance was given by an international group of four musicians based in Amman: Mrs. Anna Matuszczak Nazzal (1st violin, Poland), Mr. David Price (2nd violin, Great Britain), Mr. Firas Hattar (viola, Jordan), Mrs. Anna Maria Deutschlander (cello, Switzerland). The concert was sponsored by the Embassy of Poland in Amman in conjunction with the Radisson SAS Hotel and Freddy for Music.

    The first part of the performance was dedicated to the music of Stanislaw Moniuszko, while in the second part the audience enjoyed some pieces of F. Chopin Z. Noskowski and P. Tchaikovski. The concert was an integral part of the 4thPolish Jordanian Business Forum "Poland Closer".

    Distinguished guests amongst the large audience included the official delegation from Poland with the Speaker of Senate H.E. Mr. Bogdan Borusewicz and accompanying senators, as well as some ambassadors from other embassies in Jordan.

    There were also other officials from Poland, business people from Poland, Jordan and Iraq, representatives of the world of culture and arts, journalists and members of the Polish community in Jordan.On 6 September 2007 Jordanian business people, who had been invited to the Radisson SAS Hotel, had an opportunity not only to meet their business partners from Poland but, along with a large Jordanian audience, were also able to enjoy an artistic event which brought them closer to the rich heritage of Polish classical music.At the end of the performance, the musicians were warmly applauded, receiving a standing ovation.

    September 2007

    Piotr Bargłowski

     

    Polish Aid: School Library Pilot Project Initiated

    The Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Amman is sponsoring the project of building a library pavilion at a Catholic primary school in Anjara, 70 km to the north of Amman. At present about 200 students from the age of 6 to 16 attend the school. Children from Muslim families are studying there as well. The project was made possible thanks to funds from the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in the framework of Polish foreign aid for the year 2007.The project called "Maktabati" ("My Library") is a first venture of this kind in Jordan. Hopefully it will initiate a process of building several more libraries in the neediest regions of Jordan. The library will be accessible not only to children, but also to other inhabitants of that small town. Beside the availability of books, children will have the possibility of learning how to operate computers and other media. The library of Anjara can also serve the purpose of encouraging the popularization of Polish and European culture.

    The charity organization, Family International Community Services, helped in selecting the beneficiaries who would receive this aid. Their responsibility is also to monitor the proceedings of the project and to support in the purchase of the library's equipment. The construction scheme of the library was designed by Eng. Basem Tell, who also estimated its cost. The building will be carried out by his company - Talcon Engineering & Construction -- who is donating some of the construction materials.Before the venture started, the Ambassador of Poland, Mr. Andrzej Biera, and representatives of Family International Community Services - Mrs. Elisabeth Graham and Mr. Thomas Bivolaru - visited the Anjara Latin School twice, along with Eng. Basem Tell, to see the site where the library would be built. During the first visit on the 25th of June 2007, the project's details were presented to the schoolmaster and the location for the construction was decided on.

     

    Another working meeting of the Polish Ambassador with the management of the Anjara school took place on the 9th of July 2007.  Coincidentally, it happened at the same time as a visit of a group of some 30 Polish children from Ruda Slaska in Southern Poland, where 23 workers had been killed in a catastrophe at the "Halemba" coal mine a year before. The trip to Jordan of the orphaned children of Ruda Slaska was sponsored by a Polish charity organization. Thanks to the close Polish-Jordanian relations, the children had the possibility to attend the holy mass led in the Arabic language and to see a statue of Our Lady of the Mountain.

    Anjara, whose population includes a percentage of Christians, is situated in a poor region of Jordan. It is a very important place for all Jordanian Christians, as a sanctuary of Our Lady of the Mountain is situated there. The local legend says that Jesus Christ, Our Lady and the Apostles stopped in neighboring caves on the way from Jerusalem to Galilee.

    August 2007

    Izabela Szymczak

    Student of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan

     

     

    Polish Embassy promoting Petra

    Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Amman joined the campaign of promoting  voting for Petra to one become of the new Seven Wonders of the World. A recent events appealing for the mass voting for Petra was a  Car Rally from Amman to Petra and then to Wadi Rum. It was  organized on 21st-22nd June by Ahmed Odeh & Sons Co. with participation of the Polish Embassy in Amman.  Ambassador Andrzej Biera motioned for the race to be started. In Petra,  the participants had  the opportunity of voting at a mobile Internet center activated specially for this purpose. The major part of  rally participants were members of the Royal Automobile Club in Amman. The event was reported by the Jordanian mass-media in the framework of  an  extensive national campaign promoting Petra and garnering support.

    June 2007
    Janusz Janke

     

    Celebrating Karol Szymanowski's music in Amman

    The Karol Szymanowski concert recently held at the Royal Cultural Center proved a big hit among the Ammanite crowed. Top classical musicians from Poland - Robert Szreder (violin), Piotr Jasiurkowski (violin) - especially came to play in the event organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Amman recently.

    The concert was performed to celebrate the fact that Poland made 2007 as the year of Karol Szymanowski since it has been 125 years since his birth and 70 years since his death. He lived between 1882 and 1937, eras which saw major innovations in classical music in Poland. He is widely regarded as the no2 man in the Polish musical world after Frederick Chopin and he himself regarded Chopin to be a model and a representative of the musical national style which every composer should emulate and aspire to.

    In a rare event that underlines, the importance of cultural cooperation between the East and West, the Szymanowski concert was joined from Egypt by: Hossam Shehata (violin), Mohamed Saleh (piano) who played different classical pieces to Polish composers. During the 1920s, Szymanowski traveled to Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and the United States.

    In many ways this is what Szymanowski would like to have seen in his life-time. He saw music as a national art to Poland but said it can't exist in isolation from the contemporary achievements and composers of other countries, particularly favoring the neo-romanticism style of Richard Wagner, Richard Strauss, Max Reger, Alexander Scriabin, and the impressionistic style of Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel.  They were major European composers and he saw his country's music as a logical extension of that.

    And thus he belonged to the Young Poland movement, an informal group of composers that wanted to strengthen bridges with European music going all the way to France and reaching Russia with such composers as Modest Mussorgski, Alexander Borodin and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.

    Their trends, technique and technical achievements influenced his compositions, writings and teachings on music, particularly in the first half of the 20th century, and some would say especially the 1920s, when he made his controversial stamp on Polish contemporary music

    He was a prolific writer and composer with four symphonies to his name, a piano concerto, two ballets (Harnasie and Mangragora) and two operas. He wrote compositions for the piano, many mazurkas, for the violin, two string quartets, a sonata as well as a number of orchestral songs.

    Many today say his genius lay in his innovation and combination of different styles of music which he tried to intermarry through out his life. Critics today say he used folk music and different ways of performing that music to create melodic and harmonious ideas that become the characteristics of contemporary music in Poland.

    From 1926 till 1930, he was a directory of the State Conservatory in Warsaw where he tried to integrate his musical ideas together, intertwining the classical music with folklore and the music of the mountains as he called it.

    But this may have also led to his downfall. Other musical critics did not appreciate what he was trying to do, and vehemently opposed him while the general audiences did not approve either because they were accustomed to listening to traditional music.

    However, Szymanowski would not be put out and one admirer said he "undertook a solitary fight for the musical education of the nation", and continued to do so till his death in 1937.

    June 2007

    Marwan Asmar

     

    Polish National Under-20 Football Team in Jordan

    Between 5th and 12th June 2007 the Polish national under-20 football team visited Jordan. The team took part in an international tournament in which the Jordanian and Syrian national teams also participated.

    The Jordanian cup was one of the latest parts of the preparation for the under-20 World Cup which will take place in Canada between 30th June and 22nd July.

    The players began their visit by meeting with the Polish community in Jordan. A good opportunity for this meeting, organized by the cultural affairs attaché, was a joint viewing of a live TV transmission of the Polish senior team's match. Unfortunately, the  match, played as part of the eliminations for Euro 2008, ended in an Armenian victory, so only a successful outcome to the junior team's game could cheer up the Polish supporters in Jordan. The players didn't let the fans down. The team played three matches: two against the hosts and the other one against Syria. The Jordanian national team have also entered the World Cup in Canada, so the encounters were gripping and absorbing until the last minutes of the matches.

    The first two matches ended in a draw: 1:1 against Jordan and 2:2 against Syria. However, thanks to the determination and cheering of the Polish supporters, in the last encounter the young Polish players got the better of Jordan by 3:2. His Royal Highness Prince Ali Ibn Al Hussein - President of the Jordanian Football Association - was also watching this great show.

    On 10th June at 10:30 a.m. a press conference with members of the Polish Football Association and the team coach took place in the Polish Embassy. A representative of the Ukrainian Embassy was also invited to the conference. The journalists were interested in the organization of the 2012 European Championship which will be hosted jointly by Poland and Ukraine . A lot of questions about the condition of young Polish players before coming World Cup in Canada were also asked.

    The young national team also had the opportunity to get to know Jordan. In their free time the players did some sightseeing in the Amman area, they admired the ancient city of Petra and bathed in the Dead Sea.

    On 12th June the team left for Poland to complete preparations for the World Cup. The Polish "red-white" team will start its World Cup campaign on 30th June when it faces the Brazilian team. On 3rdJuly they will play the US and on 6th July South Korea. All the matches will be played in Montreal. We wish the team good luck and  we are keeping our fingers crossed.

    June 2007

    Piotr Bargłowski

     

     

    Photo exhibition "The Wolf''

    A photo  exhibition entitled "The Wolf"  was  opened in the King Hussein Cultural Centre in Amman from 13th to 17th of May. The presentation  was organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Poland. Visitors could admire works of art of  Polish photographer Tadeusz Budziński. Below you can find some of the pictures taken during the exhibition.

    May 2007

     

    Dead Sea Ultra Marathon

    "Run to the lowest point on Earth" - that was the watchword of the 14th Dead Sea Ultra Marathon organized with a great deal of effort, by the Society for the Care of Neurological Patients under the patronage of HRH Prince Raad Bin Zeid.

    The marathon consisted of five runs: the 48.7 km Ultra Marathon, 42 km Marathon, 21 km Half Marathon, 10 km Fun Marathon and a 4.2 km Junior Marathon.

    DSUM involved 1800 runners from 48 nationalities - not only professional athletes or champions but also amateurs and tourists willing to compete and to have a great time.

    One of the participants of the 14th Dead Sea Ultra Marathon was the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland to Jordan - Andrzej Biera - who completed the distance of 42 km in the time of 5:51:59. The participants of the Classic Marathon started at Marj al Hammam near Amman and the run led them to the beautiful Amman Tourist Beach at the Dead Sea.

    The 14th Dead Sea Ultra Marathon was the main fund rising event for the Society which provides neurological patients with medical aid and covers the costs of necessary surgery for the needy. So far, the Society has contributed towards the treatment of 940 neurological cases at a cost of nearly 600, 000 JD (850, 000 USD).

    April 2007

    Joanna Cicha
    Student of the Adam Mickiewicz University

     

     

    Film WARSAW in Amman

    In November 2006 in Amman will take place 18th European Union Film Festival.

    This is third time when polish movie will be introduced. In 2004 Poland presented film "To ja złodziej" and in 2005 "Vabank".

    This time Poland will show film titled "Warszawa" (Warsaw).

    Details about projection will be soon transmitted.

     

     

     

     

     

    WARSAW is a film with many storylines, all of which play out during a single day in winter. The main characters are linked through the city in which they find themselves. They also share the fact that they all come from the provinces. Each of them has different plans and objectives upon arriving in the capital. Victoria (Dominika Ostalowska), on her way to Andalusia, passes through Warsaw and is held up by her hope for love, something she actively seeks. Pawel (Lukasz Garlicki), upon coming of age, leaves the orphanage where he has lived and decides to find a job in Warsaw. Klara (Agnieszka Grochowska) arrives in the capital with the aim of moving in with her fiancé. Other storylines focus on a fruit-farmer who has come to Warsaw in his van filled with apples to look for his daughter, and a war veteran who loses his way in the city when the street layout of the new Warsaw proves markedly different from that from the time of the Warsaw Uprising. The protagonists pass each other in the streets without noticing, until the evening, when they are all brought together through a traffic accident.

    Showered with awards, WARSAW has something in it of Tadeusz Konwicki's WNIEBOWSTAPIENIE / THE ASCENSION - a rather gloomy city where the main characters lose their way and wander aimlessly. In that film we had the Polish People's Republic in full bloom, while here we have a flourishing Capitalism, which ultimately tames each of the young protagonists who arrive in the capital to pursue their dreams of a better life. (...) They quickly abandon their illusions, but not all is lost, for they say 'no' to duplicity, lies, and hypocrisy. There is a beautiful scene in the film that might be viewed as a metaphor: Dominika Ostalowska, betrayed by her lover, awaits at a bus stop and keeps herself warm by fervently practicing Flamenco steps, this Spanish dance form being the realm in which she seeks perfection." (Zdzislaw Pietrasik, "Polityka" weekly, September 27, 2003).

    "The authors of the screenplay of WARSAW, Dariusz Gajewski (born 1964) and Mateusz Bednarkiewicz, have entwined several parallel storylines in a manner that brings to mind Altman's SHORT CUTS. We know neither the beginning nor end of each. The authors of the screenplay wanted the heroes and heroines of WARSAW to be viewed as variations on a single character. It is noteworthy that Warsaw is in fact lacking from WARSAW - the city itself must be found. It appears to us through the eyes of strangers who wander around with no particular intent. This film demonstrates the chasm that has opened between the Polish past and the Polish present, between generations, between people. The Citadel, a wall pock-marked with bullet holes, the statue of the Mermaid, the monument of the Uprising, and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier all loom up suddenly in front of the main characters - as if they were surrealistic objects, traces of a forgotten culture with which we have lost touch." (Tadeusz Sobolewski, "Gazeta Wyborcza" daily, September 22, 2003).

    The jury of this year's festival in Gdynia clearly wanted to redeem itself for last year, when Trzaskalski's EDI lost with Koterski's DZIEN SWIRA / DAY OF THE WHACKO. Koterski himself, as the jury chairman, voted for youth this year, and rightfully so, because the voice of young Polish cinema was the most resounding and persuasive at this year's festival. Why then was the awarding of the Golden Lions to Dariusz Gajewski's WARSAW greeted with boos during the ceremony? WARSAW is not a realistic story about life in the capital city. Rather, it brings to mind a fable in episodes about the city, where young people arrive with dreams, after severing relationships with their loved ones, with lives that only now might acquire meaning. During a single day - the time-span of the film - nothing can be completely resolved or completed. Gajewski avoids preaching, capturing instead a series of moments showing the identities of both the characters and the city forming." (Pawel T. Felis, "Gazeta Wyborcza" daily, September 22, 2003).

     

     

     

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