Birzeit Nights Festival Honors Prisoners

The Birzeit University Student Affairs Deanship revived the Fourth Birzeit Nights Festival on June 8-9, 2014. The festival included a variety of songs and folk dances performed by Palestinian groups, including Palestinian Folklore, Roots “Juthour” and Yalalan.

The first night of the festival was attended by university president Khalil Hindi and his deputies, Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Rula Maa’yah, who attended as a representative of Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, a number of high-ranking officials, as well as a large audience of students and their parents.

The festival opened by paying tribute to the Palestinian prisoners, who are presently engaged in hunger strike, and to those who sacrificed their lives for the Palestinian cause.

In his opening speech, Dean of Student Affairs Mohammad Al-Ahmad said that the festival aims to deepen the legacy of heritage among students, and to focus on the prisoners’ issue. "This year’s event seeks to revive the artistic and cultural heritage while providing financial support to the Needy Students’ Fund,” he said.

The second day included performances by Zamn band from Acre, Birzeit University Sanabel Group and Wishah Folk Dance Group, along with poet Zahi Wahbeh and artist Umaymah Khalil from Lebanon via videoconferencing.

The festival was sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, United Auto Trade Company, Bank of Palestine, Wataniya Mobile, Grand Park Hotel, Golden Wheat Mills Company, Bisan Center for Research and Development and Call U Company.

Participating singing and dancing groups were honored alongside the festival’s media sponsors.  Minister of Education and Higher Education Khawla Shaksheer, Vice President for Academic Affairs Henry Giacaman, and Dean of Student Affairs Mohammad Al-Ahmad thanked Palestine TV, Raya Network, MAAN Network, Al-Ayyam newspaper, Al-Hayat al-Jadidah newspaper, in addition to the Palestinian police, Al-Muhtaseb Company and Adnan Jitan & Sons Company.