Speech of the President of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev at the opening ceremony of the monument to Academician Yusif Mammadaliyev - September 16, 1998

Ladies and gentlemen!

First of all, I cordially welcome you, the representatives of intelligentsia and science, and congratulate you on the occasion of this remarkable event which takes place today in Baku. Azerbaijan is proud of not only its natural beauty, but also of the monuments created by our people. According to our traditions, it was not common in Azerbaijan and in the East to erect monuments to persons. But our people has developed, assimilated useful aspects of the world culture and applied them to its lifestyle, benefited from the world culture. Thus, magnificent architectural and sculptural monuments were created in Azerbaijan in the 20th century. They have made our country more beautiful. I think that it is a good tradition that monuments and statues renovate our settlements. Moreover, they reflect the respect of the Azerbaijani people to our prominent figures, our history, our science, our culture, and our state. The monuments erected in Baku in the 20th century are dedicated mostly to writers, poets, men-of-culture, and public figures. Among the greatest contributions of the Azerbaijani people to the world culture are the scientific contributions of our scholars. We are proud that the Azerbaijani people have historically had worldwide famous scientists. They have enriched the world science and earned fame for the Azerbaijani people. Today we commemorate all the Azerbaijani scientists with great respect and shall never forget their heritage.

Remarkable events happened in Azerbaijan in the 20th century. The 20th century, which was a period of complicated, contradictory and great changes, revolutions and wars, witnessed rapid development of science and culture. At the end of the century we should fairly evaluate the past period calling everything by their names. The Azerbaijani people also felt the changes of the 20th century in their lifestyle. We remember all our tragedies, losses and victims in the 20th century with sorrow and shall never forget them. Furthermore, we value the historical way and achievements of the Azerbaijani people through hardships during the 20th century. So will the next generations, I think. The science has developed significantly and the people have got educated in Azerbaijan in the 20th century. A number of schools, universities, research centers, and institutes have been established in Azerbaijan for the integration of people into the world civilization. The establishment of the Azerbaijani Academy of Sciences in 1945 demonstrated the great achievements of our science to the entire world. Now we can feel proud of the great contributions of the Azerbaijani people to the world science in the 20th century. Azerbaijan is the land of sciences. The Azerbaijanis are highly educated. Azerbaijan became famous worldwide with the researches, inventions and works of our scientists. One of the prominent figures of Azerbaijan was Yusif Mammadaliyev, a nice man and famous scientist. In 1996, we celebrated his 90th anniversary as a national holiday, which symbolized the high respect of the present generation for his deeds. The anniversary ceremony dedicated to Yusif Mammadaliyev also demonstrated the current level of our science to the world. His life, activities, works, and great scientific heritage are a remarkable chapter of our history. With his intellect, knowledge, talent, self-sacrifice, scientific inventions, contributions to the Azerbaijani science, overall activity, Yusif Mammadaliyev has entered our history. Therefore, we pay our tribute to Yusif Mammadaliyev, remembering his deeds with great pleasure. Erection of the monument to Yusif Mammadaliyev near the Academy of Sciences in the centre of Baku is reasonable and fair, given his service in the development and organization of sciences in Azerbaijan. This monument is dedicated to Yusif Mammadaliyev, as well as to the development, past and future of the Azerbaijani science. It displays that science have always been and will be promoted in Azerbaijan. Committed to science and scientific researches despite hardships of this complicated period, scientists are worth of great respect. Using this opportunity, I declare that the development of science in Azerbaijan is one of the main concerns of the government and will be promoted under the protection of our state. This gathering on the occasion of the opening of the monument to Yusif Mammadaliyev is a sign of respect to science and scientists in Azerbaijan. I am very pleased that my decree on immortalizing the memory of Yusif Mammadaliyev has been implemented and this monument was erected. The mayoralty of Baku and all sponsoring and participating organizations have contributed to this monument. In her speech Yusif Mammadaliyev`s daughter expressed her gratitude to all the contributors. I also join Sevda Mammadaliyeva and thank all, who have taken part in the creation of this monument. Thank you very much. While Sevda Mammadaliyeva was speaking, I thought that she is a worthy daughter of her father. It is obvious that Yusif Mammadaliyev`s children inherited their father`s innate talent. I suggest that this talent will be passed to next generations. It is a great pleasure for me to take part in this ceremony with you. I am also glad that another part of our capital has become more beautiful. We develop our country and renovate Baku, trying to place it among the most attractive cities of the world. I wish you the best and assure you that our government will do its best for the prosperity of Baku and Azerbaijan. Thank you.