“These are not just words, but a very real proposal. We will not just be friends and brothers, the brotherhood will be all the more natural, as a significant part of the population of the city is from Azerbaijan,” Arie Tal said.
The Director of the Center for the Conservation of Culture of Mountain Jews, a member of the Board of Directors of “AzIs”, Shaul Siman-Tov, gave an opening speech. The conversation about the history of the ADR and its importance for the development of democracy in the Caucasus and throughout the Middle East was continued by the well-known Israeli political scientist and a member of the "AzIs" Board, Arie Gut. In his speech, Gut put special emphasis on the fact that the democratic traditions based on tolerance, equality, civil rights and freedom of religion, started by the ADR government, are successfully continued and developed in the modern Republic of Azerbaijan, which, in this sense, is a full successor to the ADR.
Mr. Gut did not forget to mention that the health minister in the government of the ADR was a famous physician from Baku, Dr. Evsej Gindes, which clearly shows that even in those early years there was no anti-semitism in Azerbaijan, and Jews were considered an integral part of its population.
"The State of Israel appreciates the role of the government of Azerbaijan in a warm and sincere attitude to the twenty thousand strong Jewish communities. Azerbaijan is not, and has never been anti-Semitic, and we, who have come from Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani Diaspora, are always proud of this tolerance.
Azerbaijan is a genuine example of an inter-civilization dialogue. Show me another country, Muslim or Christian, where, under the patronage of the President and the First Lady two synagogues and the largest Jewish educational center in the South Caucasus are built. I don`t think there is any other country like this," Gut said.
Professor Mikhail Agarunov and other speakers talked about the importance of the Azerbaijani government`s care and attention to the Jewish community, the history and culture of the Jews of Azerbaijan.
The evening ended with a concert of the famous Israeli singer, Tomer Aliyev, who performed patriotic songs from the repertoire of the great Rashid.Behbudov, and performance by the Caucasian dance ensemble of Tirat-Carmel.