United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

The Director-General commemorates the 100th anniversary of Mir Jalal Pashayev

On 10 November 2008, Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, and Mrs Mehriban Aliyeva, First Lady of Azerbaijan and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, opened an event organized to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of the illustrious Azerbaijani author and scholar Mir Jalal Pashayev at UNESCO Headquarters.

Mrs Aliyeva’s father, Mr Arif Pashayev, and Mir Jalal’s other children – Mr Hafiz Pashayev and Mrs Adiba Pashayeva – were also present.

UNESCO was officially associated with the 100th anniversary of the birth of Mir Jalal Pashayev as part of its global action to promote international understanding. Writer and literary critic, Mir Jalal Pashayev (1908-1978) is recognized as a classical author, scholar and outstanding teacher who left a significant trace in Azerbaijan literacy science and made a valuable contribution to the promotion of Azerbaijan literature. In addition to his academic record, he is remembered as one of Azerbaijan’s most gifted short story writers and satirists, whose works have been translated into many languages.

In his opening remarks, the Director-General expressed his satisfaction at the excellent cooperation established between Azerbaijan and UNESCO in recent years under the leadership of President Aliyev. Reiterating his congratulations to President Aliyev on his re-election, the Director-General said he looked forward to further strengthening UNESCO’s cooperation with Azerbaijan during the President’s second term.

Thanking Mrs Aliyeva for organizing the celebration event, the Director-General paid tribute to her “unwavering commitment to promoting UNESCO’s values, especially in the fields of education, culture and gender equality – three of our top priorities”. He specifically mentioned three meetings hosted in Baku - a UNESCO Regional Conference in Support of Global Literacy (May 2008)*, an International Conference on Expanding the Role of Women in Cross Cultural Dialogue (June 2008) and a high-level meeting on youth and dialogue (November 2007).

Before giving the floor to the First Lady, the Director-General mentioned that when her grand-father was once asked to identify the greatest achievement of his life, Mir Jalal Pashayev had said it was his family. The evening’s programme featured a documentary film on the life of Mir Jalal Pashayev and a concert of classical, traditional and contemporary music of Azerbaijan, with an accompanying exhibition in front of Room I.

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Author(s): Office of the Spokesperson - Source: Flash Info N° 158-2008 -  Publication Date: 13-11-2008

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