In the International webinar on 'Yalda, Regional Solidarity' held on Saturday, December 19, 2020, the participants wished for the peace and solidarity of the people of the ECO Region.
According to the ECO Cultural Institute, in his opening remarks, Sarvar Bakhti, President of ECO Cultural Institute, underlined the antiquity of the intangible heritage of "Yalda" and the deep concepts it embodies and expressed hope that the event will have a significant role in safeguarding cultural heritage.
Addressing the event, Gholam-Ali Haddad Adel, President of Iran`s Academy of Persian Language and Literature and Saadi Foundation, examined the various mystical and scientific aspects of Yalda Night, referred to some legends associated to the ancient historical tradition and underpinned the innate Iranian affinity to the celestial bodies and the two points known as 'the Solstices' and 'the Equinoxes'.
Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, expressed satisfaction and appreciation for the international view to the history of Yalda Night and expressed hope that Yalda Night will be registered as a UNESCO intangible heritage of the region in near future.
H.E. Abdul Ghafoor Liwal, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, referred to the ancient history of Yalda Night in Afghanistan, while expressing hope that by ending the dark night of war in Afghanistan, the country would celebrate the ancient traditions with neighboring countries.
Also, H.E. Nizomiddin Zohidi, Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan, indicating the ancient rituals of the ECO region as a manifestation of the solidarity of nations, referred to the tradition of Yalda in Tajikistan and its role in the preservation of the historical heritage of the region.
For his part, H.E. Avazbek Abdurazakov, Ambassador of the Kyrgyz Republic, congratulated Yalda Night and elaborated on the similar traditions of celebrating Yalda in his country and praised the webinar initiative made by the organizers.
H.E. Ahmad Paktachi, faculty member of the Institute of Humanities and director of the Encyclopedia Research Institute, viewed Yalda as an intergenerational issue among the ECO countries and indicated it as an opportunity to deal with the crisis of intergenerational disintegration which could provide suitable ground for the new generation to benefit from the intelligence of our ancestors to see Yalda rituals as a favorable occasion for reviving hope.
It is worth mentioning that during the event hosted by ECO Cultural Institute, video clips featuring Yalda rituals in the countries of the ECO region were also presented.