About UNESCO and Azerbaijan
UNESCO - the specialized UN agency is the largest intergovernmental forum for the cooperation in the fields of education, science and culture. Its Constitution was signed on November 16, 1945 in London, and on November 4, 1946 the agency, consisting of 20 member states, was officially launched.
For this specialized United Nations agency, it is not enough to build classrooms in devastated countries or to publish scientific breakthroughs. Education, Social and Natural Science, Culture and Communication are the means to a far more ambitious goal: to build peace in the minds of men. As defined by Article I of the Constitution of UNESCO, the purpose of the Organization is to contribute to peace and security by promoting collaboration among nations through education, science and culture in order to further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.
Today UNESCO is composed of 193 Member States. It maintains close cooperation with UN and its specialized agencies, also has contractual relations with the leading international organizations such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, The Organization of African Unity, the League of Arab States, ISESCO, etc. UNESCO actively cooperates with more than 600 leading international and non-governmental organizations.
UNESCO is composed of three main governing bodies: the General Conference, the Executive Board and the Secretariat.
The General Conference is the supreme body of UNESCO. It meets every two years, and is attended by Member States and Associate Members, together with observers for non-Member-States, intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Each country has one vote, irrespective of its size or the extent of its contribution to the budget. The General Conference determines the main lines of work of the Organization. Its duty is to set the programmes and the budget of UNESCO for the next two years. It also elects the Members of the Executive Board and appoints, every four years, the Director-General. The working languages of the General Conference are Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.
The Executive Board, in a sense, assures the overall management of UNESCO. It prepares the work of the General Conference and sees that its decisions are properly carried out. The functions and responsibilities of the Executive Board are derived primarily from the Constitution and from rules or directives laid down by the General Conference. Every two years the General Conference assigns specific tasks to the Board. Other functions stem from agreements concluded between UNESCO and the United Nations, the specialized agencies and other intergovernmental organizations.
It has 58 members are elected by the General Conference, largely, based on the diversity of the cultures and their geographical origin. The Executive Board meets twice a year.
The Secretariat is based in Paris and it functions permanently. The Secretariat employs civil servants from some 170 countries. The office of the Director-General of UNESCO has been held by Mrs. Irina Bokova (Bulgaria) since 15 November 2009. Along with its headquarters in Paris, UNESCO has a wide network of regional bureaus, institutions and centers in various countries of the world. Azerbaijan is covered by the UNESCO Moscow Office.
Azerbaijan – UNESCO Relations
After restoration of its independence in 1991, the Republic of Azerbaijan has carried out the policy of the cooperation with a number of significant international and regional organizations. The Republic of Azerbaijan, deciding to cooperate with UNESCO providing its member states with the opportunities to benefit from assistance of high-level experts, technical aids, as well as the training of scientific and pedagogical personnel and the participation in global scientific projects, joined the Organization on July 3, 1992.
The delegation headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Hasan Hasanov participated in the 27th Session of the General Conference of UNESCO in October 1993. The head of the delegation noted that Azerbaijan participated in such a significant event for the first time and provided brief information about Azerbaijan. The most important was that during the session, the 500th anniversary of the birth of Azeri poet Muhammad Fizuli was included in the UNESCO List of the dates of birth of the outstanding persons to be celebrated.
The most significant step in the development of UNESCO-Azerbaijan relations was taken in the meeting of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev with the Director General of the UNESCO Mr. Federico Mayor during his official visit to the Republic of France in December 1993. During the meeting, the Parties discussed the perspective plans for enhancement and further development of the cooperation between them.
According to Article VII each Member State shall make such arrangements as suit its particular conditions for the purpose of associating its principal bodies interested in educational, scientific and cultural matters with the work of the Organization, preferably by the formation of a National Commission. Therefore, necessary measures for establishment of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO had been carried out and, on 21 February 1994, the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Heydar Aliyev signed the Order providing for taking of all necessary measures for this purpose. According to the Order the National Commission was established within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Minister of Foreign Affairs was appointed the Chairman of the Commission and was authorized to set up the structure of the Commission. The Commission consisted of the 25 members, who were the heads of relevant ministries and agencies, intellectuals and other representatives of society, and the permanent secretariat. On 15 September 2005, the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev, taking into account the level of development of the mutual relations between UNESCO and the Republic of Azerbaijan, signed an Order on additional measures related with the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO. According to the Order, the new composition of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO was defined. Currently the Chairman of the Commission is the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Elmar Mammadyarov.
The National Commission determines the main lines of the policy of Azerbaijan in UNESCO.
The day-to-day operational work on the cooperation of Azerbaijan with UNESCO is carried out by the Permanent Secretariat of the National Commission within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Baku and by the Permanent Representation of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO in Paris.
The headquarters of UNESCO is located in two separate offices in Paris.
Address: 7, place de Fontenoy, 75352 Paris 07 SP, France
1, rue Miollis , 75732 Paris Cedex 15, France
Tel: +33 1 45 68 10 00
Fax: +33 1 45 67 16 90
Permanent Representation of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO
Address: 1, rue Miollis, 75015 Paris
Tel: + 33 1 45 68 28 78
Faks: + 33 1 43 06 05 47
National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO
Address: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan
4 S. Gurbanov Street,
Tel: + (99412) 596 94 07
Fax: + (99412) 596 94 07
UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva
Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva put forth great efforts for enhancement of relations of Azerbaijan with UNESCO. This cooperation is not based only on bilateral relations and not only two parties benefit from it. The ancient and rich culture of Azerbaijan proceeded from national to international level and became a part of world culture. Being a multilateral international organization UNESCO provides opportunity for mutual cooperation of various countries, owing to which the young Republic of Azerbaijan could maintain the exchange of experience directly with UNESCO and various countries through it in the fields of education, science and culture.
The First Lady of Azerbaijan, the President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva played a vital role in development, enhancement and strengthening of Azerbaijan-UNESCO relations. In September 2004, Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva was designated as UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Oral and Musical Traditions, in recognition of her contribution to promotion of traditional music, literature and poetry, her outstanding service in the fields of musical education and exchange of world cultures and her commitment to UNESCO’s ideas.
Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva, who is a doctor by profession, is actively engaged in culture, education and sports. Organizing festivals, exhibitions, cultural events and concerts, through the foundation headed by her - The Friends of Azerbaijan Culture, she has rendered great services to the promotion of the cultural heritage of her country and contributed to its protection at national and regional levels. For the purpose of introducing the traditional classical music of Azerbaijan worldwide, Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva, initiated the establishment of an International Mugham Center in Baku.
In recognition of her large-scale and selfless activity in various field, including inter-civilization dialogue, her care of children in need, her support to activities targeted at improvement of their living conditions and education, as well as her contributions to the works done in the Islamic World, on 24 November 2006, Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva was conferred the title of ISESCO Goodwill Ambassador.
UNESCO Director General Mrs. Irina Bokova presented UNESCO's Mozart Gold Medal to Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva on July 30, 2010.
The Republic of Azerbaijan has joined the following UNESCO Conventions:
1. 14 May 1954 Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict (1993), First Protocol (1993) and the Second Protocol (1994) thereto;
2. 16 November 1972 Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (1993);
3. 2 December 1979 Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Diplomas and Degrees concerning Higher Education in the States belonging to the Europe Region (1994);
4. 16 December 1983 Regional Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Diplomas and Degrees in Higher Education in Asia and the Pacific (1995);
5. 6 September 1952 Universal Copyright Convention (1997);
6. Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education in the European Region (1998);
7. 14 November 1970 Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property (1997);
8. 2 February 1971 Convention on Wetlands of International Importance especially as Waterfowl Habitat (2001);
9. 29 October 1971 Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms against Unauthorized Duplication of their Phonograms (2001);
10. 1995 International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT) Convention on Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural Objects (2003);
11. 17 October 2003 Convention for Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage (2006);
12. 19 October 2005 International Convention against Doping in Sport (2007).
13. Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. Paris, 20 October 2005 (2010).
UNESCO Chairs at Azerbaijan Universities
Chair on Human Rights, Democracy and Peace at the Academy of Public Administration under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
Recently work on establishment of UNESCO Chairs at the other educational institutions is conducted.
Sectoral National Committees
1. International Council of Museums (ICOM);
2. Management of Social Transformations (MOST);
3. International Hydrological Programme (IHP);
4. Man and the Biosphere programme (MAB);
5. International Bioethics Committee (IBC);
6. International Music Council;
7. International Theatre Institute.
The following events related to Azerbaijan have been decided to be celebrated within the framework of UNESCO Programme of anniversaries of outstanding persons and historic events:
1996 – 500th anniversary of the birth of Muhammad Fizuli;
2000 – 1300th anniversary of “Kitabi Dada Gorgud”;
2001 – 800th anniversary of the birth of Nasiraddin Tusi;
2002 – 200th anniversary of the birth of Azeri scholar, orientalist Mirza Kazimbay;
2005 – 100th anniversary of the birth of outstanding Azeri scholar academician Yusif Mammadaliyev;
2006 – 100th anniversary of the birth of famous Azeri carpet-maker artist Latif Karimov;
2008 – 100th anniversary of “Leyli and Majnun” Opera
2008 – 100th anniversary of the birth of Azeri writer Mir Jalal Pashayev;
2009 - 100th anniversary of the birth of Azeri artist Sattar Bahlulzade.
2009 – 100th anniversary of the birth of Azeri scholar academician Musa Aliyev;
Events held within the framework of UNESCO:
1. 1996 – dedicated to the 500th anniversary of the birth of Fizuli;
2. 1997 – on the problems of technical professional education;
3. 1999 – on the problems of translation;
4. 2000 – dedicated to the 1300th anniversary of “Kitabi Dada Gorgud”;
5. 2001 – the second regional meeting of the Pedagogical Universities of the Caucasian countries;
6. 2001 - dedicated to the 800th anniversary of the birth of N.Tusi;
7. 2001 – international seminar on normative acts for protection of cultural heritage;
8. 2001 – “Digital Silk Road” regional seminar;
9. 2002 – on the most significant events of the XX century;
10. 2002 – dedicated to the 200th anniversary of the birth of Mirza Kazimbay;
11. 2003 – on cultural corridor among GUAM States;
12. 2003 – UNESCO Turkic States Space Generation Forum;
13. 2003 – Seminar on improvement of professional skills in application of information and communication technologies in professional activity;
14. 2004 – dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict;
15. 2004 – regional seminar for national coordinators of Associated Schools Network (ASPnet) and the teachers of the schools included in the network, on the topic of “Quality Education in Practice”.
16. 2005 – Conference on the reform of the educational system in Azerbaijan, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris;
17. 5-6 may 2005, Baku, Conference aimed at establishment of the Europe-the Caucasus-Asia Observatory under the cultural policy of GUAM, with the assistance of UNESCO and on the initiative of the Ministry of Culture;
18. June 1-3, 2005 - Baku, 8th International Congress “Energy, Ecology, Economy”;
19. August 23-26, 2005 - Official visit of the Director-General of UNESCO Koïchiro Matsuura to Azerbaijan;
20. August 24, 2005 - Baku, International conference, “UNESCO-Azerbaijan: bridge to the future”. Mutual Memorandum of Understanding on the cooperation between UNESCO and Azerbaijan in the field of education was signed at the end of the Conference. The Memorandum provides for the cooperation in such priority areas as promotion of equal access to quality education, application of information and communication technologies in education, quality education through teacher training and curriculum development at all levels of education, establishment of international cooperation network;
21. 2005 – a number of events in Baku and the Headquarters of UNESCO (Paris) for celebration the 100th anniversary of the birth of famous Azeri scholar academician Yusif Mammadaliyev within UNESCO;
22. January 16, 2006 – Baku, International seminar on “Application of Information Technologies in Library Automation” held by Azerbaijan National Library named after M.F.Akhundov;
23. January 25-27, 2006 – Baku, International conference “Museum Management: Azerbaijan museums in face of economic and social changes”; held by Azerbaijan National Committee of International Council of Museums;
24. March 15-16, 2006 – a number of events devoted to the participation the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, the President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva, in the Annual Meeting of the Goddwill Ambassadors in the Headquarters of the organization, attended by the Director-General of UNESCO and his Deputies;
25. March 5-11, 2006 – visit of two Norwegian experts, in connection with the inclusion of Gobustan State Historical-Artistic Reserve into the UNESCO World Heritage List, with the assistance of Heydar Aliyev Foundation. As a result of the visit, the Plan of Actions meeting the requirements of UNESCO was prepared by experts;
26. May 19, 2006 – “Agreement on Implementation of the National Action Plan for the Safeguarding of the Mugham of Azerbaijan as a Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity” was signed between the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan and UNESCO, according to the Order of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
27. June 12-13, 2006 – Baku, International conference on the results of the “Promotion of Inclusive Education in Azerbaijan” Project, implemented by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Azerbaijan with the financial assistance of UNESCO. The main objective of the one-year project is to provide opportunities for upbringing and education of the children in need of special care (children with mental and physical disabilities) at the kindergartens and secondary schools. As the result of the project 22 children in need of special care were involved in upbringing and education at Kindergarten No. 80 and School Lyceum No. 43 in Baku city, as well as at Kindergarten No. 66 and School No. 4 in Sumgayit.
28. October 19, 2006 – Azerbaijan Day held under the title 'Azerbaijan: On the Junction of Cultures and Civilizations' in frame of 'Dialog Among Civilizations' week dedicated to the 60th anniversary of UNESCO in the headquarters of UNESCO;
29. September 18-21, 2006 – Baku, International seminar on “Development of Professional Education in Azerbaijan” and national seminar on “Application of Credit System in Universities of Azerbaijan” held by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Azerbaijan with the financial assistance of UNESCO within the framework of the Memorandum on the cooperation in the field of education signed between Azerbaijan and UNESCO in 2005;
30. February 19, 2007 – the Headquarters of UNESCO, Paris, International Symposium on “Azerbaijan Carpet Trade” and “Azerbaijan Carpet” Exhibition, devoted to the 100th anniversary of the birth of carpet-maker, people’s artist Latif Karimov, within the framework of UNESCO programme of anniversaries of outstanding persons and historic events;
31. February 21, 2007 – Roundtable at Azerbaijan Ataturk Center on the occasion of the International Day of Native Language, jointly organized by National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, Azerbaijan Ataturk Center and UN Department of Public Information;
32. April 27, 2007 – Protocol on Cooperation between Heydar Aliyev Foundation and ISESCO was signed by the President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO and ISESCO Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva and the Director-General of ISESCO Abdulaziz bin Osman al Tuweijri, who was in visit to Azerbaijan. The Protocol, regulating major principles of cooperation for 5 years, envisages development of ties in field of science, education and culture, development and implementation of joint projects, coordination of actions;
33. June 18, 2007 – Agreement on the plan of implementation of the “Development of Professional Education” project was signed between UNESCO, the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Heydar Aliyev Foundation, in Heydar Aliyev Foundation;
34. June 18-19, 2007 – Baku, the 5th Baku International Conference of Ombudsmen on “Capacity-building support for Ombudsmen in Promotion and Protection of Human Rights” held by the Ombudsman Institute of the Republic of Azerbaijan with the financial assistance of UNESCO;
35. November 21, 2007 – Première of the films “Artificial Violets” and “Days in Meditation” devoted to mugham performer Fargana Gasimova, within the framework of the International project “Screening the Art of Mugham”, during the 7th International Audiovisual Festival in the Business Center;
36. December 19, 2007 - website of the “Information Observatory on Cultural Policy of the GUAM Countries” was launched by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, according to the agreement with Moscow Bureau of UNESCO;
37. 2007 – “Analytical Report on the State of the Youth in Azerbaijan” was published, according to the agreement between Moscow Bureau of UNESCO and the national Commission;
38. 2007 – website “Atlas of traditional music of Azerbaijan” was launched with the financial assistance of UNESCO.
39. May 14-16, 2008 – Baku, “Gulustan” Palace, Conference entitled “Addressing Literacy Challenges in Europe with a sub-regional focus: Building Partnerships and Promoting Innovative Approaches”, a part of a series of the UNESCO Regional Conferences in Support of Global Literacy. The Conference organized by UNESCO, Heydar Aliyev Foundation and the Ministry of Education was held on the initiative of the President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Godwill Ambassador of UNESCO and ISESCO Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. The Conference was attended by the Director-General of UNESCO Koïchiro Matsuura, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassadors, as well as Ministers of Education of a number of countries and many experts, representatives of Azerbaijan Government and the Ambassadors of Foreign countries to Baku.
40. June 10-11, 2008 – Baku, Gulustan Palace, International Forum on Expanding the Role of Women in Cross-cultural Dialogue. The forum organized under the initiative of President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva and co-sponsored by UNESCO and ISESCO, was attended by more than 300 representatives from different countries of the world, including a number of First Ladies, the Director-General of ISESCO and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassadors.
41. November 23, 2008 – Scientific-theoretical conference dedicated to World “Philosophy Day” established by UNESCO was held at the ANAS Philosophy, Sociology and Law Research Institute .
42. November 28, 2008 - International scientific-practical conference on “Research and Learning problems of Islam region Philosophy in the context of World Philosophy” was held in the framework of World Philosophy Day under the aegis of UNESCO at the ANAS Presidium.
43. November 28-29, 2008 –International Conference on “Strabon Way as the part of Great Silk Road” was held under the initiative of Permanent Secretariat of the Azerbaijan National Commission for UNESCO, UNESCO Central Asian Research Institute and ANAS.
44. December 27, 2008 – Opening ceremony of International Mugham Center, built under the initiative of UNESCO and ISESCO Goodwill Ambassador Mr. Mehriban Aliyeva, at the National Park, Baku. President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev, President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva participated at this event.
45. March 18-25, 2009 - First International Mugham Festival co-organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Azerbaijan and Azerbaijan Composers' Union was held in Baku. The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, H.E. Mr. Ilham Aliyev, First Lady of Azerbaijan H.E. Mrs Mehriban Aliyeva, the Director-General of UNESCO Mr. Koishiro Matsuura who was in official visit to Baku (March 19-21, 2009) and a number of other guests from 17 countries of the world attended the festival. Scientific conference, international competition of Mugham performers and various concerts were organized during the Festival.
46. March 19, 2009 – the President of Azerbaijan Republic, H.E. Mr. Ilham Aliyev received Director-General of UNESCO Koichiro Matsuura. The President informed the UNESCO chief about cultural projects implemented in Azerbaijan, pointing out the importance of the International Mugham Festival. On his behalf, Mr. Koishiro Matsuura expressed his appreciation to participate in opening ceremony of International Mugham Festival organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation.
47. March 19, 2009–President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO, H.E. Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva had a meeting with Director-General of UNESCO Koichiro Matsuura. In order to achieve objectives regarding to protection of Intangible Heritage, Agreement on Cooperation was signed between Heydar Aliyev Foundation and UNESCO. After signing ceremony Mr. Koichiro Matsuura presented a memorial silver medal to Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva.
48. March 19, 2009 – Meeting of UNESCO Director-General Mr. Koishiro Matsuura with Members of National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO; On March 19, 2009 Director-General of UNESCO Mr. Koishiro Matsuura participated at the “Round table” of Azerbaijan National Commission for UNESCO, where he met with Mr. Elmar Mammadyarov, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the chairman of National Commission, as well as with other members of the National Commission.
49. March 20, 2009 - The Opening Ceremony of the Modern Art Museum, Baku; The opening ceremony of the Modern Art Museum was held in Baku on March 20, 2009. The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, H.E. Mr. Ilham Aliyev, the First Lady of Azerbaijan H.E. Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva and the Director-General of UNESCO Mr. Koishiro Matsuura took part in the ceremony. President Ilham Aliyev and the Director-General of UNESCO visited the exposition of the museum initiated by Mehriban Aliyeva, the Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO and ISESCO.
50. March 20, 2009 - a large ceremony was organized in front of the gates of the Icheri Sheher (Inner City) in Baku, on the occasion of the Novruz Holiday. The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, H.E. Mr. Ilham Aliyev, the First Lady of Azerbaijan H.E. Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva and the Director-General of UNESCO Mr. Koishiro Matsuura attended the ceremony.
51. April 20-22, 2009 – “Museum Management- XXI century“; The National Training on Modern Museum Management based on UNESCO/ICOM “Museum Management- XXI century “ Museum Training Package for museum specialists of Azerbaijan was held in Baku;
52. May 14, 2009 – Annual Meeting of UNESCO Goodwill Ambassadors; The First Lady of Azerbaijan, H.E. Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva participated in the annual meeting of UNESCO goodwill ambassadors that took place at the Headquarters of UNESCO in Paris. Film about the activities and visits of UNESCO Director-General Mr. Koichiro Matsuura to Azerbaijan presented by Heydar Aliyev Foundation was screened during the event.
53. May 21, 2009 – “Jazz Nights in Museum”; Art exhibit and jazz concert “Jazz Nights in Museum” were held in Museum within the framework of “Spring in Museum” campaign and on the occasion of World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, with the support of Museum Center, UNESCO Moscow Office and National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO.
54. June17-19, 2009 – The VII International Baku Conference of Ombudsmen; The VII International Baku Conference of Ombudsmen was held with the support of the UNESCO Moscow office on the topic of “Bioethics, human rights and new technologies: the legal and ethical aspects of reproductive health and family planning” initiated by the Institution Commissioner for Azerbaijan Human Rights;
55. June 19, 2009 - Presentation Ceremony of “Master Plan” for conservation of Icheri Sheher was held with support of Department of State Historical-Architectual Reserve Icheri Sheher under the Cabinet of Ministers. “Master Plan” is one of the important documents for excluding Icheri sheher from the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger. Icheri Sheher Reservation was excluded from the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger, as a result of the decision adopted on June 22-30, 2009 at the 33rd session of UNESCO World Heritage Committee held in Seville.
56. July 12-18, 2009 - Delegation consisted of three UNESCO experts (Piter Tindemans, Eduardo Martinez and Vafa Mustafayev) visited Baku, with the aim of the assistance for preparation of the National Science and Technology Strategy, as well as assistance in making reforms in these fields.
57. September 25, 2009 – Presentation ceremony of the website created within the project “Russian Museum: virtual branch” was held with the support of UNESCO Moscow Bureau, Museum Center and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Azerbaijan Republic. “The Russian Museum: virtual branch” Information-Educational Center, its functioning, the history of Museum Center, areas of its activities, the information on the participation in international projects, as well as different exhibitions are reflected in the website.
58. November 17, 2009 –A number of events were organized by Permanent Delegation of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO and other government bodies of the Republic of Azerbaijan within the framework of “The Azerbaijani Day in UNESCO” at the UNESCO Headquarters, including the Conference entitled “Azerbaijani Woman: yesterday, today and tomorrow”, the celebration of the 100th anniversary of academician Musa Aliyev, and the celebration of the 100th anniversary of famous Azerbaijani artist Sattar Bahlulzadeh.
59. November 14, 2009 - UNESCO Moscow Office, National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO and “AzerTag“ Information Agency implemented Workshop on the topic of “Modern climate changes and Azerbaijan”. The main goal of the workshop was the familiarization of mass media representatives and through them also population about global climate changes and their local impact in Azerbaijan.
60. December 3, 2009 Presentation of nomination files of Ashig Art and Novruz Holiday inscribed on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, booklets and CD dedicated to Ashig Art of Azerbaijan was held at the Museum Centre in Baku with participation of the representatives of National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, governmental officials, ANAS, mass media. It’s noteworthy that Azerbaijan Ashig Art and Novruz Holiday were included into the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which took place in Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates) from September 28 to October 2, 2009.
61. February 20-28, 2010 - UNESCO expert on technoparks Dr. Malkolm Perry visited Baku. Besides several institutions of ANAS, the expert also visited Sumgait Technology Park. Last, Mr. Perry visited the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO and at the meeting he expressed high appreciation of the works in STP construction area.
62. April 28, 2010 - the First Lady of Azerbaijan Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva met with Director-General of UNESCO Mrs. Irina Bokova. During this meeting, Mrs Mehriban Aliyeva and Mrs Irina Bokova discussed the ways of promoting UNESCO’s projects and activities especially in the field of education and culture. Mrs. Irina Bokova commended Mrs. Aliyeva’s activities as UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, and expressed interest in the further cooperation, as well as noticed her intention to visit Azerbaijan in the near future.
63. May 20, 2010 - Presentation Ceremony of “Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions” dedicated to “World Day For Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development”, was held in Museum Centre. It’s noteworthy that Azerbaijan joined this convention in 2009 and on June 15, 2010 was declared a full member. The message of Mrs. Irina Bokova, Director General of UNESCO, on the occasion of “World Day For Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development” was read in this event.
64. June 1-10, 2010 - Fact-finding mission of UNESCO Expert Patricio Jeretic to Sheki for implementation of intersectoral Project on mobilizing cultural resources for sustainable deveplopment of Sheki region organized by UNESCO Moscow Office and National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO within the frame of UNESCO Country Programming Document (UCPD). The aim of mission was supporting cultural policy with the purpose of safeguarding diversity of natural heritage, developing culture, echological tourism, education, information and comunication technologies.
65. June 17-19, 2010 - Baku (Azerbaijan) hosted an International conference on “Human Rights and Environment: Legal and Ethical Aspects of Climate Change”. The Conference was organized by the Commissioner for Human Rights (Ombudsman) of the Republic of Azerbaijan with the support of the UNESCO Office in Moscow.
66. June 22-24, 2010 - Membership of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Intergovernmental Committee; On June 22-24 III session of General Assembly of Parties to the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage was held at the UNESCO Headquarters. At the end of the session Azerbaijan was selected as a member in elections to Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
67. July 28 -August 2, 2010 - Director-General of UNESCO Irina Bokova paid a visit to Baku with invitation of the First Lady of Azerbaijan Republic, Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO, president of Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. During her visit Director General was received by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev and the First Lady Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. Mrs. Irina Bokova got acquainted with Museum of Modern Art, Mugham Center, building of Carpet Museum and attended Icheri Sheher, UNESCO World Heritage Site.
68. July 29, 2010 - Director-General of UNESCO Irina Bokova met with members of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO.
69. July 30, 2010 - Director-General participated at the official opening ceremony of the Second International Musical Festival. The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev and the First Lady Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva also participated in this event.
70. August 1, 2010 - Director-General of UNESCO visited Sheki in the framework of her visit to Azerbaijan. Director-General attended Sheki Khan Palace, Albanian Temple in Kish village, Sheki-Ipek silk factory, Yukhary Karvansaray (Upper Karvansarai) monument.
Cultural and natural heritage of Azerbaijan
Protection of the cultural and natural heritage of Azerbaijan is one of the main lines in cooperation with UNESCO.
Icharishahar Architectural Complex which is the historical center of Baku was included in the World Heritage List in December 2000. However, due to the earthquake in Azerbaijan, the architectural monuments were damaged, therefore on July 4, 2003, in the 27th session of World Heritage Committee, Icharishahar complex was included in the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger. In accordance with Decrees and Orders signed by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev state-care to the protection of historical-architectural monuments in Icheri Sheher was increased. Experts of UNESCO World Heritage Committee in their reports highly appreciated the works done by Azerbaijani Government in the direction of preservation of Icherisheher Reserve. Icheri Sheher Reserve was excluded from the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger, as a result of the decision adopted on June 22-30, 2009 at the 33rd session of UNESCO World Heritage Committee held in Seville.
According to the decision adopted at the 31st session of UNESCO World Heritage Committee (New Zealand, 2007), Gobustan State Historical-Artistic Reserve was included in the World Heritage List.
For protection of the natural heritage of Azerbaijan, the nomination files for Hirkan Forests were prepared and submitted to the World Heritage Committee. Relevant measures are being taken for this purpose.
In 1999, Azerbaijan mugham performer Alim Gasimov won the first prize of UNESCO/International Music Council. On November 7, 2003, Azerbaijan mugham was declared the Masterpiece of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. In 2008, Azerbaijan composer and pedagogue Firangiz Alizada was conferred the title of “Artist for Peace”. For his outstanding services Tahir Salahov was awarded with Gold medal of “Picasso”. Award was presented to painter on March 19, 2009 by Director-General of UNESCO Koishiro Matsuura.
September 28-October 2, 2009 - Azerbaijan Ashig Art and Novruz Holiday were included into the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity at the 4th session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which took place in Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates).
UNESCO Director General Mrs. Irina Bokova presented UNESCO's Mozart Gold Medal to Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva on July 30, 2010.