Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Sun Mar 12 13:55:14 UTC 2006


[From AzerTac, March 10, 2006, 22:54:11]

The Azerbaijani country-fellows from the United States of America will be
represented by delegation in structure of 17 peoples. Before leave for
Baku, the Washington-based correspondent of AzerTAc interviewed the
president of the Azerbaijan Society of America Tomris Azeri, who has
expressed her hopes connected with the Congress.

Q. Tomris Khanum, who will be a part of delegation, which will represent
Azerbaijanis living in the USA at II Congress?

A. First of all, I should note, that our delegation is not only Americans
of the Azerbaijan origin. Under the invitation of the State Committee on
Work with the Azerbaijanis Living in Foreign Countries, also will go to
Baku the Americans of Italian, Jewish, Turkish and other origin. However,
all of them have expressed wish to join members of the Azerbaijan Society
of America and to take part in work of the Congress. Therefore, I can
tell, that our delegation consists of the American Azerbaijanis and
friends to Azerbaijan.

Q. How do you remember I Congress of Azerbaijanis of the world?

A. I took par in its work and have made speech. This Congress was the
initiative of President Heydar Aliyev, who has played a huge role in
consolidation of Azerbaijanis of the world. The memoirs dearest to me on
the First Congress just also are connected with late President Heydar
Aliyev. I remember, how he, being in the hall, with interest listened to
us. And we with great excitement listened to Heydar Aliyevs speech. Each
word caused a feeling of pride, that we are Azerbaijanis. By the reception
arranged in our honor, dialogue, conversations, President Heydar Aliyev
let know to all Azerbaijanis, that they are at home. We were filled with
feeling of strong connection with Azerbaijan. Inspired by this, we have
come back in our countries with desire to bring to native Azerbaijan more

Q. Any concrete works have been done after the First Congress?

A. Certainly. We constantly keep in contact with our compatriots with whom
we have got acquainted at the I Congress of Azerbaijanis of the world. The
State Committee on Work with the Azerbaijanis Living in Foreign Countries
has been created. It was the fine initiative. The State Committee led by
Nazim Ibrahimov does much for consolidation of all our compatriots. Our
organization maintains close connections with Committee. We feel their
support in all our projects, our activity. They try to help us. At the
same time, I consider, that Azerbaijanis of the world also should render
assistance to the State Committee. But it is only the beginning. I am
confident, that the further work of Committee will be more successful.

Q. You have told about projects. Are you going to make any offer at II

A. We have a number of projects realization of which will help us to
represent interests of Azerbaijan more widely. For example, we are going
to spend on regular basis assemblies in such large American cities, as
Washington and New York, inviting also representatives of other Diasporas
living in America. Many Americans have no enough representation about
geo-strategic value of Azerbaijan for the USA. By means of such assemblies
we can propagandize more widely the policy of Azerbaijan, its place in the
international arena. One more project is connected with creation in
America of the Azerbaijan centers. The Azerbaijan emigrants arriving in
America, the students or the Azerbaijanis for a long time living here
address us for the help. Someone wishes to learn the Azerbaijan language,
and someone needs consultation and so forth. By virtue of the limited
opportunities we not always manage to help to them. Having created in the
USA the Azerbaijan centers, we can make them some kind of the Azerbaijan
houses that their doors were always open for our compatriots.

Q. What work has leaded recently the Azerbaijan Diaspora in the USA?

A. Our activity is directed on popularization in America of our culture,
history, and the position of the Azerbaijan Republic. We continue to work
with the Congress. We have accelerated the program of twin-cities. Very
soon in number of such twin-cities as Ganja and Newark, Guba and Brooklyn,
Baku and Houston, will enter and Nakhchivan and one of the cities of the
state of Florida. One more direction of our activity is protest actions.
We arrange the actions connected with bloody days of our history before
headquarters of the United Nations, diplomatic representatives of Armenia.
For example, the last month such an action took place in connection with
the anniversary of Khojali tragedy before the embassy of Armenia in
Washington. I go to Baku with greater hopes, projects. And I am assured,
that new acquaintances with our compatriots from over the world will
promote stronger co-ordination of our work and rallying of the
Azerbaijanis living in the different countries.

Our delegation will declare at the Congress, that we are always ready to
protect interests of Azerbaijan and we shall support the policy pursued by
President Ilham Aliyev.

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