Azerbaijan-Austria humanitarian and cultural relations
Azerbaijan and Austria share a number of common values and interests in humanitarian and cultural spheres, which had been formed in the course of various historical and political processes that both countries have undergone. These shared values serve as a solid ground for Azerbaijani and Austrian peoples to establish closer ties and promote common objectives.
Multifaceted and rich cooperation that both countries enjoy in humanitarian and cultural fields is based on numerous bilateral initiatives and legal documents.
Legal framework of cooperation:
Cooperation in the cultural and humanitarian field involves interaction between the relevant state structures and institutions, as well as personal contacts between representatives of Azerbaijani and Austrian public. Up to date this cooperation has been marked by signing of the following documents:
* Agreement on Cooperation between Baku State University and Vienna University (2000)
* Agreement on cooperation between Austrian National Library and Azerbaijani State Library named after M.F.Akhundov (2002)
* Agreement on Cooperation between Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences and Austrian Academy of Sciences (2003)
* Agreement on Cooperation between Azerbaijan State Oil Academy and Leoben University (2003)
* Memorandum of Understanding between Baku Music Academy and Vienna University of Music and Fine Arts (2007)
* Academic Agreement between Azerbaijan Tourism University and Krems University of Applied Sciences (2007)
* Agreement on Cooperation between Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Krems University of Applied Sciences (2007)
* Agreement on Cooperation between Azerbaijan Tourism University and Krems University of Applied Sciences (2011)
* Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Federal Ministry for Education, Arts and Culture of the Republic of Austria on cooperation in the fields of culture and the arts for the years 2009-2012.
Events arranged by the Embassy over last years
In November 2011 the Embassy organized at Michaelerplatz, one of the central squares of Vienna, Pomegranate festival (“Granatapfelfest”), dedicated to the pomegranate harvest time in Azerbaijan, annually celebrated in the country.
2012 March/April edition of “Skyline” Magazine presented a cover story on Baku. The edition called “Bustling Baku”, gave, among others, an overview of the history of the city, infrastructure projects that are currently implemented in Baku, as well as tourism potential of the capital.
5 March 2012 – Azerbaijan Academic Association (ASAV) organized in Webster University a conference called “Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict: 20 years of Minsk process”. University students, representatives of the diplomatic corps accredited in Vienna and the OSCE Secretariat participated in the Conference.
30 April 2012 – a joint concert of Vienna Chamber Orchestra and Azerbaijani pianist Emil Afrasiyab, commemorating late Ambassador Fuad Ismayilov, was organized at the Embassy. Azerbaijanis living in Vienna as well as representatives of the diplomatic corps accredited in Austria attended the event.
On 10 May 2012 Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan participated in the “International Luncheon”, a charity event, organized by United Nations Women’s Guild. Embassy of Azerbaijan, regularly participating in such charity projects, presented at the event samples of national cuisine, as well as contributed two round trip tickets to Azerbaijan for the tombola which was played during the event.
On 12 May 2012 “Heydar Aliyev cup” mini football tournament was organized with the support of the Embassy by Azerbaijan Academic Association (ASAV) and “Odlar Yurdu” (London) organizations. Eight teams from Azerbaijan, Austria, Turkey, Germany, Georgia, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan participated in the event.
On 24 May 2012 Embassy took part in the “Kulturen bitte zu tisch”, an event on the occasion of International Day of Intercultural Dialogue. The event was organized by International Coordination Committee of “Dialogue of Civilizations” World Public Forum, chaired by Former President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, H.E. Mr. Walter Schwimmer. Embassy of Azerbaijan and Azerbaijanis studying in Austria participated in the event and presented national cuisine.
On 18 September 2012 – Vienna Chamber Orchestra and Azerbaijani musicians gave a joint concert under the conductorship of Fuad Ibrahimov in Vienna’s “Palais Pallaviccini” palace. The concert, held on the occasion of Azerbaijani National Music Day, which marks the birthday of the great Azerbaijani composer Uzeyir Hajibayli, featured performances by soloists Afag Abbasova, Azer Rza-zada and pianist Emil Afrasiyab, who presented pieces from Azerbaijani as well as world classical music.
On 17 October 2012 – Azerbaijani wine tasting was organized in Vienna. Six Azerbaijani wine making companies (“Ganja Sharab II”, “Tovuz Baltiya”, “Sharg Ulduzu”, “Gilan”, “Savalan Aspi-Winery”, “Caspian Coast”) presented their production. Wine experts and representatives of wine associations of Austria, participating in the event, noted the high quality of Azerbaijani wines.
In November special issue of “Cercle Diplomatique” magazine on Azerbaijan, dedicated to the 20th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and Austria, was published in Vienna. The edition comprised articles by His Excellency Mr. Ilham Aliyev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, His Excellency Dr. Heinz Fischer, Federal President of the Republic of Austria, ministers of foreign affairs, communications and information technologies, culture and tourism, economic development, emergency situations, energy, president of State Oil Company of Azerbaijan, minister of economy, family and youth of Austria, Ambassadors of Azerbaijan and Austria. The November issue covered such issues as Azerbaijan-Austria relations, history, economic development, cultural heritage and tourism potential of Azerbaijan.
On 30 November – 1 December Embassy participated in the annual “International Festival Bazaar”, a charity event organized by United Nations Women’s Guild. Samples of Azerbaijani national cuisine and Azerbaijani souvenirs were presented at the event. During “Cultural presentation” part of the International Festival Bazaar students of Baku Choreography School performed national dances.
On 24 February Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan organized in Vienna “Mugam evening” with the participation of renowned mugam singer from Azerbaijan Mr. Mansum Ibrahimov.
On 10 May International kick-boxing tournament dedicated to the 90th birthday of National Leader Heydar Aliyev took place in “Vienna Gasometer” arena. The tournament brought together renowned kick-boxers from 11 countries: Azerbaijan, Italy, Hungary, Switzerland, Serbia, Turkey, the Netherlands, Romania, Austria, Poland, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
On 13 May, during the official visit to the Republic of Austria His Excellency Mr. Ilham Aliyev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan inaugurated Azerbaijani Cultural Centre in Vienna. Officials from Azerbaijan, members of the Austrian Government, represented by the second president of the National Council of the Austrian Parliament Mr. Fritz Neugebauer, prominent personalities of Austrian society took part in the opening ceremony (www.azculture.at).
On 14 May Mrs. Leyla Aliyeva, Vice-President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation inaugurated “Fly to Baku” contemporary art exhibition in Vienna. The exhibition, organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation in cooperation with “Baku” magazine and the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the Republic of Austria, was held in Vienna Museum of Art History (Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien) from 15 to 26 May. Vienna was the fifth European capital after London, Moscow, Paris and Rome to host “Fly to Baku” exhibition.
On 16 May 2013 Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan participated in the “International Luncheon”, a charity event, annually organized by United Nations Women’s Guild. Samples of Azerbaijani national cuisine were presented at the event.
On 31 May on the occasion of the Republic Day (National Day) Embassy organized a joint concert of Azerbaijani musicians and “Concilium musicum Wien” orchestra under the conductorship of Mr. Ayyub Guliyev in Wiener Konzerthaus. The famous Azerbaijani tar player Mr. Ramiz Guliyev and soloist Mr. Yusif Eyvazov performed at the concert.
On 19 June Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan in cooperation with the Azerbaijani Cultural Centre in Vienna and “Renate Rollfinke Verlag” publishing house organized the presentation and reading of “Kurzgeschichten aus Aserbaidschan” (“Short stories from Azerbaijan”) book by writer Anar.
The short stories were translated into German by Mrs. Lilianne Grimm and published as a compilation which was presented in Vienna by the author personally. The event was attended by representatives of the Austrian government, literary associations, publishing houses and book stores.