By Laman Ismayilova
The Turkish Professional Union of the Authors of Scientific and Literary Works (ILESAM) has donated 10,000 books to the fund of libraries, which will be restored in Azerbaijan's Karabakh region.
More than 900 libraries were destroyed in Karabakh as a result of Armenian occupation.
The event was held within the "Let's go to Karabakh with a book" project implemented by the Culture Ministry and the National Library.
Speaking at the event, Director of the National Library, professor Karim Tahirov said that after President Ilham Aliyev's visit to Fuzuli, the library decided to start a book collection campaign aimed at restoring the book funds of more than 900 libraries in the liberated regions.
The Azerbaijan Writers' Union of Azerbaijan first joined the campaign, and later People's Writer Elchin Efendiyev donated 500 books to the library. Karim Tahirov expressed his hope that more books will be donated as part of the campaign.
The Culture Minister Anar Karimov praised strong ties between Azerbaijan and Turkey. He pointed out on Turkey's political support during the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh War as well as the reconstruction of historical and cultural monuments destroyed as a result of Armenian occupation.
"Libraries were one of the most damaged cultural institutions during the occupation. Thus, 975 of our libraries were destroyed, more than 4.6 million copies of their book funds were looted and burned. The Culture Ministry and the National Library have launched a joint project to restore the funds of those libraries after restoration. We decided to create a Karabakh book fund and every Azerbaijani can support it. Turkey and ILESAM have already supported our call and donated 10,000 books to the fund. In the near future, these books will be read in native Karabakh," he said.
Chairman of the Azerbaijan Writers' Union, People's Writer Anar spoke about the ties between Azerbaijan and Turkey. People from all generations fought for the sake of their love for Turkey and Azerbaijan. Although this love was left behind the wall during the Soviet period, people opposing this, overcame this barrier and as a result, the borders with the fraternal Turkey were finally opened.
Turkish Ambassador to Azerbaijan Cahid Bagci also addressed the event.
"Our gift of books to the National Library today is another indication of Turkey's close ties with Azerbaijan. The book is the best tool to strengthen this cooperation," he said.
President of the International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation Gunay Afandiyeva said she received congratulatory letters from all Turkic-speaking countries after the 44-day war. She said that Karabakh, the cradle of Azerbaijani culture, is the homeland of many musicians, writers and intellectuals.
The head of ILESAM, Mehmet Nuri Parmaksiz, said that it would not be possible to hold such an event without the support of the organization he represents.
He stressed that ILESAM is supported by the world's leading organizations. The organization donates books not only to Turkic-speaking countries, but also to the entire Muslim world.
The head of the organization also said he wanted to take books from Azerbaijan to Turkey. He noted that Turkish readers need to know the history of the brotherly country.
At the end of his speech, Mehmet Nuri presented the book "Encyclopedia of scientists, poets, writers and artists" to the Culture Minister Anar Karimov.
The event was followed by the exhibition of books donated to the National Library.
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz