Ladies and Gentlemen!
I wholeheartedly welcome you all, dear participants of the International Cultural Forum «Central Asia at the Crossroads of World Civilizations».
I would like to express a special gratitude to the Secretary-General of the United Nations Mr. Antonio Guterres for supporting the initiative of Uzbekistan to hold this Forum, put forward at the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly and to the UNESCO Director-General Mme. Audrey Azoulay for the practical assistance provided in its joint organization.
I would like to express my gratitude to the representatives of partner states, authoritative international and regional organizations, leading scientists and experts, and foreign diplomats accredited in our country participating in the Forum.
Welcome to the plentiful land of Uzbekistan, to the ancient city of Khiva!
The world community is well aware and highly appreciates the important role in the development of relations between different peoples and civilizations, played by Central Asia, which for many centuries was at the crossroads of the Great Silk Road.
The appearance of the first cities and states in the region three thousand years ago laid the foundation for the active development of civilizational processes and philosophical views, science and knowledge, especially in the field of medicine, astronomy, geography, mathematics, geodesy and architecture, the formation of cultural and spiritual values.
Speaking about this, we imagine dozens of unique ancient cities such as Samarkand and Bukhara, Otrar and Khojand, Merv and Osh. The life and activities of great personalities of the past are directly related to them, among them are the scientists al-Khorazmiy, Akhmad Ferganiy, Abu Raykhan Beruniy, Abu Ali ibn Sina, Makhmud Zamakhshariy, Abu Nasr Farabiy, Mirzo Ulugbek, theologians Imam Bukhari, Imam Tirmiziy, Imam Moturidiy, Burkhaniddin Marginoni, Abul Muin al-Nasafiy, Najmiddin Kubro, poets Kamal Khujandiy, Abd ar-Rakhman Jami, Alisher Navoiy, Mirza Babur, Makhtumkuli, Abay, Toktagul, Berdakh, historians Sharafiddin Ali Yazdi, Mirkhond, Khondamyr, artists Makhmud Muzahhib, Kamoliddin Bekhzod, numerous calligraphers, musicians, musicologists and architects.
The organization of this current International Forum is in one of the ancient and eternally young cities of the region - Khiva, which has a history of 2,000 years, has a special and symbolic meaning.
I think this Forum will play an important role in the development of friendship and cooperation, good-neighborly relations between the states and peoples of Central Asia. Along with this, it will allow even deeper study and understanding of the enormous contribution of the peoples of the region to world civilization.
Holding, in cooperation with UNESCO, as a part of this International Cultural Forum, a Meeting of the International World Heritage Advisory Committee, the meeting of the Ministers of Culture of the International Organization of Turkic Culture (TURKSOY) in Khiva, the International Archaeological Conference «Archeology and Tourism: Determining the Potential and Use of Heritage» and the II International the Bakhshi Art Festival in Nukus, the V International Congress of the World Society for the Preservation, Study and Popularization of the Cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan in Tashkent, we recognize as important practical steps in this direction.
We will continue to implement large-scale projects that serve to ensure peace and stability in our region, the development of the cultural and humanitarian spheres. Such a noble goal can only be achieved by combining our efforts and cooperation. The historical and cultural interconnectedness of the countries of Central Asia, the common values of our peoples are a solid foundation for creating a well-being and prosperous future.
Today, in Uzbekistan, we are carrying out fundamental transformations in the field of science and culture, which are aimed at forming the foundation of a new era of the Renaissance - the Third Renaissance. In this regard, we are interested in further strengthening partnerships with the world scientific and cultural community, such prominent representatives as you.
I wish all the Forum participants a sound health and new successes in the study and popularization of the unique culture and art, science, the unique tangible and intangible heritage of the peoples of Central Asia.
President of the Republic of Uzbekistan