President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin presents the “Pushkin” Medal to Leyla Aliyeva
Azerbaijan Cultural Centre was solemnly opened in Moscow. Located in the All-Russia State Library of the Foreign Literature named after M.I.Rudomino, the Center is the first cultural center in CIS created with the support of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation and the Embassy of Azerbaijan to Russia.
Svetlana Gorokhova, the Deputy Director for International Relations of the Library, estimated opening of the Azerbaijan Cultural Center in Moscow as very important and special event: ‘Today, we are opening Azerbaijan Cultural Center in Moscow. It is an important event for Moscow and Russia in whole. The event is unique since this is the first cultural centre in the Library of the Foreign Literature. This is the first cultural centre of Azerbaijan, the CIS member country. We have very ancient and long-term cultural ties with Azerbaijan. Our relations in the field of cultural exchange are excellent, and our future relations will be brighter. The idea of creation of this center came from the Azerbaijani Ambassador to Russia and our director Ekaterina Geniyeva. Such a joint project is their proposal. Heydar Aliyev Foundation has welcomed and supported this proposal, and the centre has been created.’
Vice-President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation Leyla Aliyeva greeted the visitors, thanked the Library management for the support to the project. L.Aliyeva said: ‘It is symbolic that Azerbaijan Cultural Centre is opened on the eve of the 20th anniversary of Azerbaijan’s independence. A new sovereign state on the world map was created on October 18, 1991. I would like to congratulate you all on this holiday. For these 20 years, Azerbaijan has rapidly developed and blossomed. Today, we are taking next step to bring our cultures and nations closer. I hope not depending on their ages this centre will be interesting for everyone wanting to more closely know the rich culture and ancient history of our country. At this centre we have collected books, films, CDs, every kind of information on Azerbaijan. The Centre will familiarize you with activities of Azerbaijan’s eminent writers, poets, artists and composers, beauties of nature of our country, unique architecture of Baku. We plan to arrange creativity soirees, exhibitions, workshops, meetings with interesting and famous Azerbaijanis. Of course, we will give here also lessons of the Azerbaijani language, history and literature. Teachers invited from Baku will give these lessons. I sincerely believe the number of our visitors will rise day by day and our doors will always be open to everyone.’
Then, Leyla Aliyeva informed exhibition ‘Baku and its residents. 30 years later’ by Ashraf Heybatov, the Honored Artist of Azerbaijan and Russia, holder of the International Diploma of the Ambassador of Peace, was opened the same day in the foyer of the Library. L.Aliyeva underlined the exhibition will function all the week long and expressed hope it will be visited by many of Moscow residents.
Leyla Aliyeva once again thanked participants of the ceremony, wished the staff of the Centre successful work.
Ambassador of Azerbaijan to the Russian Federation Polad Bulbuloglu named symbolical and significant event the opening of Azerbaijan Cultural Center as Azerbaijan these days marks the 20th anniversary of restoration of its state independence. The Ambassador said a lot has been done during these 20 years. Azerbaijan rapidly develops in all fields. Stressing importance of the Baku International Humanitarian Forum held October 10-11 under patronage of the Azerbaijani and Russian presidents, he said prominent guests and participants of the Forum from all over the world discussed global problems. ‘We are very proud that Azerbaijan has recalled itself first of all at this famous temple of book. Thanks to this centre, relations between specialists and cultural communities of Russia and Azerbaijan will be developing,’ the Ambassador noted.
Azerbaijan’s Honor Artist, member of UNESCO International Federation of Artists Ashraf Heybatov expressed gratitude to Heydar Aliyev Foundation and its Vice-President Leyla Aliyeva for organizing the exhibition. He presented a ceramic vase reflecting a picture of Leyli and Mejnun to the Library and an Azerbaijani carpet with image of Nizami Ganjavi to the Centre.
Director of the Centre Nisa Mustafayeva thanked Heydar Aliyev Foundation and Leyla Aliyeva for implementing the project. She said: ‘It is quite eminent that the opening of the Centre and opening of an exhibition by the Azerbaijani artist – both projects are realized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation just here at the world cultural centre. Participation of Heydar Aliyev Foundation’s Vice-President Leyla Aliyeva in the opening ceremony shows that we are ready to cooperate with all interested in this job. I express my deep thanks to the Library’s management for warmly supporting from the first days the idea on the establishment of the Azerbaijan Cultural Centre.’
Following the solemn ceremony, participants saw exhibition of Ashraf Heybatov, were familiarized with the Centre supplied with modern equipments, Azerbaijan books, souvenirs and carpets provided by Heydar Aliyev Foundation.
The ceremony was attended by Arzu Aliyeva, representatives of the cultural centers of USA, France, Bulgaria, the Netherlands, Japan, Latin American countries, CoE information office, delegates of youth and All-Russia Azerbaijanis Congress.