Muhannad Qaiconie, founder of Baynetna via his official Facebook page Muhannad Qaiconie, founder of Baynetna via his official Facebook page

'Baynetna' culture center in Berlin brings Arab & Germans together

Fri, Aug. 11, 2017
CAIRO – 11 August 2017: 'Baynetna', a new Arab Culture Center in German's capital city of Berlin is helping to introduce locals to the Arab world, diversifying culture in Berlin.
Baynetna is the creation of 30 year old Syrian Muhannad Qaiconie, who arrived in Berlin two years and ago and set up the center to both help other migrants feel at home, and educate the locals about his culture.

The idea came to Qaiconie when, stuck in a refugee center in Germany, he asked a friend from Berlin if there was an Arabic library anywhere and was surprised when she said no, according to the UNHCR's story on him.

"That stayed on my mind," he told the UNHCR. After winning a scholarship to a liberal arts college in Berlin, Qaiconie teamed up with his friend and created 'Baynetna' in the top floor of a building that housed refugees from Syria and Iraq.

"Berlin is now a hotspot for Syrian authors, artists and musicians, and we want to give them a meeting place and a platform,” Qaiconie tells the Daily Star. The center hosts both poetry reading and a library filled with Arabic books, patching up the void of Arab culture that had so bothered Qaiconie.

Baynetna also hosts Syrian musicians every weekend, on the top of the building's roofs. Crowds of people from all backgrounds come to visit, sharing songs in German, English and Arabic. Qaiconie's ultimate goal thus runs contrary to the fear of anti-immigrants, who believe the migrants will take over everything in their land;

“I think we will add to German society,” the Daily Star quotes him. “We won’t just take but we will add.”
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