04 April 2001 --
Alexandrian activists Dr. Adel AbuZahra, and Mr. Sayed El-Nahas, his wife Mahiba Abdel Salam, Professor Lutfi AbdelWahab, Mrs. Mona El-Nashar and other friends founded the Egyptian Association of the friends of the Library of Alexandria. They want it to be an association for all of Egypt, not just Alexandria, but the hard core of support is to come from the Alexandrian civil society. Ismail Serageldin hailed this as a very welcome sign that the community was thereby making the Bibliotheca Alexandrina its own. He reiterated his belief that the activism of the civil society was essential if the Library was not to evolve into just an elite center of academic discussion without roots in its community. He wished the activists well and promised to work with them and other friends of the Bibliotheca around the world to forge a network of friends unmatched in the world.