The United Nations Headquarters in New York hosted an event titled Day of Azerbaijan, dedicated to the 97th anniversary of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic.
During the event, which was organized by the Azerbaijani mission to the UN in New York, guests were informed about the European continent’s very first European Games to take place in Baku on June 12-28.
Promotional posters depicting Azerbaijani athletes and sports venues, which will host more than 6,000 European athletes during the European Games, were displayed at the event. Photographs with illuminating views of Azerbaijan, reflecting the multi-ethnic culture of the country were also featured for viewers.
A recording of President Ilham Aliyev’s speech at the Baku 2015 torch lighting ceremony in the ancient temple of “Ateshgah” as well as the torch’s route through regions of Azerbaijan were screened during the evening.
Ambassador Yashar Aliyev, the permanent representative of Azerbaijan to the UN presented the opening remarks. He thanked everyone for attending the Day of Azerbaijan and proceeded to provide information about Azerbaijan’s rich culture and traditions, its achievements, and the very first European Games.
The diplomat stated that formation of the ADR as the first soviet state in the Muslim world was a very significant occasion.
He said, during its short existence, the ADR achieved many great milestones, including the creation of a multi-party and multi-ethnic parliament, ensuring the universal human rights and freedoms of citizens, and the establishment of the Baku State University as the first modern institution of higher education in the region. Women in Azerbaijan were granted suffrage for the first time in the Islamic world.
Aliyev added that representatives from the Jewish and Christian communities were among the first ministers in the Cabinet of the Azerbaijan Republic, demonstrating a high degree of tolerance during this period in Azerbaijan.
The diplomat went on to say that modern Azerbaijan, which regained its independence 24 years ago, continues all these traditions to this day.
Aliyev cited the 3rd World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue held in Baku in this May, and the 7th World Forum of the UN Alliance of Civilizations to take place in Baku next year, as examples of Azerbaijan’s commitment to tolerance.
He also praised the role of ASAN service in successfully ensuring the coordination of public services. ASAN was awarded the United Nations Public Service Award in May.
The diplomat also provided information about the first European Games, noting that more than 6,000 athletes will compete in 20 sporting events. He stated that in addition to the existing sports arenas, the Azerbaijani government constructed five new sports facilities in just two years. These venues, including the National Olympic Stadium meet all international standards.
Marietta Useem-Rosenthal, the president of the Brooklyn-Baku Friendship Association, welcomed and thanked the European Games organizers and athletes.
Jan Eliasson, the deputy secretary-general of the United Nations, along with the heads of the diplomatic missions of Australia, Bahrain, Chile, China, Cuba, Czech Republic, Egypt, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Island, Turkey, Russia, Ukraine, Spain, Sweden and other countries attended the ceremony.
The ADR was established on May 28, 1918 with the goal of building an independent, free, and democratic republic. It marked a glorious page in the chronicles of Azerbaijani history. In its short period in existence, the ADR returned national consciousness to the Azerbaijani people.
Mammad Amin Rasulzade, the brightest and most prominent political figure during those times and the ideological leader of the revolutionary nationalist movement in Azerbaijan, signed Azerbaijan’s Declaration of Independence.
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