A Don Quixote statue for Hawass

Nevine El-Aref , Sunday 2 Jan 2011

Hawass named as the "personality of the year" by Spanish cultural organisation

Hawass and Lara at

Zahi Hawass was today recognised for his efforts to preserve Egypt’s cultural and archaeological heritage with the Asociación Plataforma Para El Fomento de Los Oficios Artisticos' (APFOA) personality of the year award.

The secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) was presented with an original bronze statue of Don Quixote at the SCA's Zamalek offices.

Hawass was chosen by the APFOA because he has brought the wonders of Egypt’s heritage to the world through his amazing discoveries and major restoration projects carried out at several monuments.

Francisco Lara, Vice President of APFOA, said that among the most important restoration projects completed by Hawass are the Hibis temple in Kharga Oasis and the Serapeum and Djoser’s Step Pyramid at Saqqara.

Hawass was delighted with the prize and remarked that it highlights the relationship between Egypt and Spain, particularly in the field of archaeology. There are two Spanish expeditions currently working in Egypt. One is excavating at the noblemen’s tombs on Luxor’s west bank and the other is excavating and restoring the site of Al-Bahnasa in Middle Egypt.

Hawass also said that exchanging junior restorers between both countries is an important form of cooperation because it allows young Egyptians to be trained in the latest restoration techniques.

Hawass has previously received the Medal of the Spanish Order of Arts and Culture from Spain in recognition of his contributions to world culture and his warm relationship with Spain.

He was also chosen as a recipient of the Egyptian Pioneer Award from the Spanish Egyptological Society. The award was presented to the five most influential Egyptian “pioneers” and included Umm Kalthoum, Omar Sherif, Ahmed Zuweil and Naguib Mahfouz.

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