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Ancient Turkmen City of Anau Declared Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2024

On March 25th, Rashid Meredov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan and Sultanbay Raev, Secretary General of the International Organization of Turkic Culture (TURKSOY), attended a ceremony in Ashgabat for the declaration of the nomination of Turkmen city Anau as 'Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2024'. Coinciding with the 300th anniversary of the birth of Turkmen’s beloved bard, 2024 has also been declared the ‘Year of the Great Poet and Thinker of the Turkic World: Magtymguly Pyragy.’ Revered throughout the country, the 18th century Sufi poet and spiritual teacher, Pyragy, is hailed as the father of Turkmen literature and his legacy persists through a rich ingrained tradition of Turkmen bards or ‘bagshys’ adapting his poetry to song. His image appears on numerous monuments as well as banknotes and The Magtymguly International Prize is awarded annually to distinguished scholars of Turkmen language and literature. A 197ft bronze statue, erected in Ashgabat, will be officially unveiled on June 27th; the date of a national holiday celebrating the poet. According to reports from their meeting, Meredov and Raev emphasized the importance of promoting both Magtymguly Pyragy’s legacy and the cultural significance of the ancient Turkmen city of Anau on various international platforms including those of TURKSOY, UN, and UNESCO.

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