The award ceremony took place in Moscow in 2008.

At the invitation of Professor Igor Ilyinsky, Rector of the Moscow Humanitarian University, President of the Ilyas Afandiyev Foundation Tural Afandiyev visited Moscow on a working visit. The purpose of the visit is to participate in the annual presentation of the Bunin Prize, as well as to award the rector of the Moscow State University Professor I.Ilyinsky with the Ilyas Afandiyev International Prize. In his opening speech, the president of the Foundation Tural Afandiyev noted that for many centuries the peoples of Azerbaijan and Russia have lived in peace and harmony, in the framework of good-neighborly relations. Today, relations between Azerbaijan and Russia are dynamically developing not only in the political and economic spheres, but also in the field of culture, art, education, etc. Russia is a strategic partner of Azerbaijan, which contributes to the joint implementation of regional and transnational projects in the field of humanitarian and energy security. He further noted that among the peoples living in Azerbaijan a special place is occupied by the Russian population, which actively participates in the socio-political and cultural life of the country. Equal rights and conditions in the field of education, science, culture, art and entrepreneurship, in the field of free use of the native language and religious adherence serve as a vivid example of the loyalty of Azerbaijanis to other nationalities.

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