Oct 04, 2010
Damascus, (SANA)-President Bashar al-Assad issued on Sunday Decree No. 425, appointing Dr. Mohammad Riyad Hussein Ismat as Minister of Culture and Dr. George Malki Soumi as Minister of Irrigation.
Dr. Mohammad Riyad Hussein Ismat was born in Damascus in 1947. He is a playwright, novelist, critic, director and script writer who received a Bachelor's Degree in English literature from Damascus University in 1968, a Master's Degree in theatrical direction from Britain in 1983, and two PhD in theatrical arts from the US in 1988 and Pakistan in 2007.
Dr. Ismat occupied several posts including Dean of the Higher Institute for Theatrical Arts, Assistant Minister of Culture, Director General of the Syrian Radio and Television General Commission, and Syria's Ambassador to Pakistan and Qatar.
He also wrote 33 books including plays, stories, critical essays and Syrian television series, in addition to hundreds of articles published in Syrian, Arab and foreign newspapers and magazines.
Dr. Ismat received an award for best Arabic story at the German Radio Contest in 1993, and was honored by several Arab festivals such as Cairo International Festival for Experimental Theater and Damascus Theatrical Arts Festival.
He directed 15 plays and was chosen as a member in international judge panels for theatre and television in Damascus, Kuala Lumpur, Cairo and Abu Dhabi. He is married and has a son and a daughter.
Dr. George Malki Soumi was born in al-Qameshli in 1943. An expert in irrigation and land reclamation, he received a PhD in technical sciences of irrigation and land reclamation from the Moscow Institute for Irrigation and Hydrotechnik in 1975.
He occupied the position of Director of the Irrigation and Water Uses Directorate at the Ministry of Agriculture from 1986 to 2003. In his career, he was a member of the board of trustees of the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), member of the Higher Committee for Water, and chairman of the Arab team for guidance of water use in Arab agriculture at the Arab Organization for Agricultural Development (AOAD).
He is also a UN expert in integrated management of water resources, an expert at the State Planning Commission, and a consultant at the Irrigation Committee at the People's Assembly, in addition to working with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).
Dr. Soumi has more than 265 published works in water research and uses. He is married and has a son and two daughters.
Manal Ismael / Mazen / H. Sabbagh