25 th anniversary of Azerbaijan's membership to UNESCO celebrated in Baku

An event dedicated to the 25 th anniversary of Azerbaijan’s membership to UNESCO was held on December 19 under the joint organization of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Administration of the “Icherisheher” State Historical-Architectural Reserve. The event was attended by members of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, state and government officials, ambassadors of foreign countries accredited in Azerbaijan, as well as well-known local scientists, cultural personalities and artists of our country.

Speaking at the event, Chairman of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, Minister of Foreign Affairs Elmar Mammadyarov gave information about successful works done during the activity period of 25 years of our country in UNESCO. The minister stressed that, the National Commission for UNESCO was established under the relevant Decree of the National Leader Heydar Aliyev in 1994, which during the period of its activity the National Commission had an efficient cooperation in the fields of joint mutual importance with many state and public organizations, as well as with UNESCO and member states. The Minister E.Mammadyarov said that Azerbaijan is committed to UNESCO values and noted that under the leadership of Ilham Aliyev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, our country has established close relations with this organization in the field of education, science and culture. Minister said that, as a result, Azerbaijan has become an influential member and a donor country of UNESCO.

Talking about the bilateral cooperation between Azerbaijan and UNESCO, Elmar Mammadyarov emphasized the indispensable role of the First Vice President, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Mehriban Aliyeva in bringing these relations to a more intensive and dynamic level.

Touching upon the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the minister said that 20 percent of our territories have been occupied by Armenian armed forces, and as a result of this occupation, the historical and cultural monuments of Azerbaijan, schools and libraries, as well as mosques and tombs were deliberately destroyed. The minister pointed out the fact that these abusive acts committed against our country by Armenia have been constantly raised before UNESCO.

Finally, E.Mammadyarov stressed his hope for further development of Azerbaijan's cooperation with UNESCO.

Deputy Chairman of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, Minister of Culture and Tourism Abulfas Garayev said: “Under the support of Mehriban Aliyeva, the First Vice President of Azerbaijan, President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO and ISESCO, who has an exceptional role in development of cooperation with UNESCO, protection and worldwide promotion of our cultural heritage, not only the tradition of dolma preparing and sharing, but also the Azerbaijani tradition of Mugham performance, Lavash cooking and sharing, Lahij copper art, Ashig art, Novruz Holiday, Carpet art, Tar-performance, Kelagayi art included in the Representative List of UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage, also Chovqan-Karabakh traditional horse-riding game placed in Intangible Cultural Heritage List of UNESCO for urgent safeguarding.” “Today, the cooperation between UNESCO and Azerbaijan develops fast”. Academic Akif Alizada, the Deputy Chairman of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, the President of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS) said that, UNESCO, which was created after the Second World War, has contributed to the preservation of peace in the world over the past period. This international organization develops interethnic relations. A.Alizade said that, an important period of the relations between Azerbaijan and UNESCO is tied to the name of Mehriban Aliyeva, the First Vice President of our country. The works done by Mehriban Aliyeva, as the Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO, to promote the cultural heritage of Azerbaijan is reflected in the cultural and social life of our country.

Within the framework of Azerbaijan-UNESCO relations, the President of ANAS spoke about the work carried out in the field of science during the past years, especially dealing with the implemented projects, organized events and the achievements of our scientists in the international arena.

Ramin Guluzade, Deputy Chairman of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, Minister of Transport, Communications and High Technologies touched upon the works carried out by Mehriban Aliyeva, who has a special contribution in the establishment of cooperation between Azerbaijan and UNESCO at a high level, and said: “The importance attached by Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva to the education and intercultural dialogue in Azerbaijan and
foreign countries is highly valued by UNESCO”. Minister added that information and communication technologies are closely linked to all aspects of economic and social development. The Ministry of Transport, Communications and High Technologies closely cooperates with UNESCO within the framework of the UN Broadband Communication Commission in the field of ICT. Information and communication technologies have been
announced as a priority field in Azerbaijan. In our country many projects have been implemented with UNESCO related to the ICT. The digitalization of museums, the implementation of the sound library project for persons with sight disability can be named among them. Our Ministry participates at the events of the UNESCO held in Baku and actively supports them.

Acting Minister of Education Jeyhun Bayramov, who spoke about the restoration of schools, construction of new educational complexes, and the their supply with modern equipments in Azerbaijan, also emphasized the important role of UNESCO in the field of increasing the number of experienced teachers using modern technologies in the educational process and improving the knowledge of pedagogical staff. J.Bayramov, who drew attention to the work done by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation in the field of development of education, restoration of schools and construction of new schools in Azerbaijan, said that, the cooperation between Azerbaijan and UNESCO in the field of education is successfully continued thanks to the exceptional
service of President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, First Lady of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyeva. Jeyhun Bayramov noted that he will continue to support taken steps and conducted reforms by the UNESCO concerning further development of education in Azerbaijan. Speaking at the event, member of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Administration of the “Icherisheher” State Historical-Architectural Reserve, Asgar Alakbarov, said that during 25 years very successful ties of cooperation have been established between Azerbaijan and UNESCO. Chairman of the Board of Directors said that 25 years ago our country became member of UNESCO, which is one of the world's most influential international organizations. During this period the effective cooperation with the organization have been established and important works have been conducted within the framework of cooperation with UNESCO in terms of promoting our history, protecting our cultural heritage, as well as important international events have taken place in our country.

The anniversary event continued with exhibition dedicated to the Azerbaijan’s tangible and intangible cultural heritage samples in UNESCO Lists and a concert program dedicated to the occasion of the 600th anniversary of Azerbaijan’s poet Imadaddin Nasimi which is included to the UNESCO Anniversary Program.