Jan. 31, 2011
TEHRAN -- Iran is set to launch a Noruz secretariat in the upcoming days to help collect and preserve Noruz traditions which are observed by the regional countries.
The news was announced by Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization (CHTHO) Director Hamid Baqaii in a Tehran meeting on Thursday attended by ambassadors and cultural attaches coming from 33 countries in the Middle East and Central Asia.
"Iran plans to hold a lively New Year celebration this year and is inviting the countries celebrating Noruz to appoint their representatives for future cooperation with the secretariat,” Baqaii said.
Noruz, the ancient celebration of the Iranian New Year, was registered on UNESCO’s List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2009.
Beginning on the first day of spring, Noruz had been proposed for registration by Iran, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Kyrgyzstan.
"We need to pay special respect to our ancient tradition and this collaboration would lead to better celebrations, bringing hearts closer to one another.
"Preparing the Noruz charter is also among the other decisions of the secretariat which need to be completed by the members to be later approved by UNESCO,” Baqaii said.
The secretariat also plans to submit the congratulatory message of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on the occasion of the arrival of Noruz to presidents of 14 countries and foreign ambassadors of 16 other countries this year, he said.