The 33rd International Quran Competition of the Islamic Republic of Iran got underway in a ceremony held Wednesday evening in Tehran.
The ceremony was hosted by Imam Khomeini (RA) Mosalla (prayer hall) with a number of senior officials, including Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani in attendance.
It began with playing Iran’s national anthem followed by recitation of verses from the Quran by Iranian master Javad Panahi.
Next, Hojat-ol-Islam Mohammadi, head of the Awqaf and Charity Organization, the event’s organizer, in an address welcomed the foreign contenders and thanked God for the opportunity for Iran to host representatives of over 70 countries in the contest.
He said the Quranic event helps promote the Quranic atmosphere in Iran and elsewhere in the Muslim world.
He also underlined that the competition has been based on Islamic unity, and hence comes the motto of this year’s contest:”One Book, One Ummah”.
Elsewhere, Hojat-ol-Islam Mohammadi referred to the programs to be held on the sidelines of the competition, and said one of them is the 7th congress for honoring women Quran researchers, which will be organized at Mosalla on Sunday.
Ali Larijani also delivered a speech at the inauguration ceremony, in which he highlighted the importance of reading and contemplating the Quran and acting upon its teachings.
The contenders in the two categories, namely memorization and recitation of the Holy Quran, will start their competitions on Thursday.
The international contest will run until Tuesday, May 17.
Iran is being represented by Hamed Valizadeh in the category of recitation and Mojtaba Fard Fani in memorization.
17 Quran experts from Iran and a number of other countries, including Iraq, Pakistan, Indonesia, Syria and Yemen, form the competition’s panel of judges.