The development of cultural and humanitarian cooperation is the basis for further rapprochement between the peoples of Central Asia and China
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) -- At the online summit "States of Central Asia - China", held on 25 January 2022, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, the parties exchanged views on a wide range of interaction between Central Asian states and China, paying special attention to the development and strengthening of cultural and humanitarian cooperation.
This is natural, China is not only one of the world’s leading industrial powers, but also a treasury of ancient culture, art and traditional medicine. For thousands of years, the inventions of Chinese scientists, the works of artists and writers have conquered the world with their uniqueness.
The earliest traces of human habitation are found in the southwestern part of China, where people lived more than 1.7 million years ago. In the first half of the 20th century, fossil remains of an ancient man were found near Beijing, which the scientific world called "Sinanthropus".
In the era of the Qin Empire, in 221, through the efforts of the ruler Qin Shi Huang, China for the first time became a single state. It was during his reign that the construction of the Great Wall of China began, as well as a network of roads with a total length of 7500 kilometers, which connected the country.
Relations between the Chinese and Uzbek peoples are rooted in the distant past. They are inextricably linked with the history of the Great Silk Road. This trade route firmly connected Uzbekistan and China in ancient times, allowing the countries to organize a cultural dialogue, which continues to determine the general vector of development of relations even today.
Therefore, it is no coincidence that both peoples treat their history and roots with extreme care, not only preserve them, but also strive to open unknown pages, demonstrating to new generations what can be achieved through joint efforts.
There are many valuable Chinese written sources in the libraries and research centers of our country, which mention the historical cities of Bukhara, Samarkand, Khiva. Scientists believe that “the history of ancient ties between the Uzbek and Chinese peoples is most fully reflected in the works of the ambassador of the Han Empire, scientist and traveler Zhang Tsang, which date back to the 2nd century BC.
The successes of the Uzbek-Chinese joint archaeological expeditions, which carried out excavations in various regions of Uzbekistan, are well known. For example, antiquities found in the Ferghana Valley, according to a Chinese source, there was the state of Davan, similar in shape, patterns and architectural features to the samples of ancient monuments found in the Celestial Empire, clearly demonstrate the common history of the two countries.
Today, Chinese-Uzbek relations in the humanitarian sphere are intensively developing. At the moment, two Confucius Institutes operate in Uzbekistan in Tashkent and Samarkand, and departments of the Uzbek language have been opened at the Central University of Nationalities of the PRC and Peking University.
In connection with the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Uzbekistan and China, the grand opening of the research center Uzbekistan-China at the Tashkent State University of Oriental Studies took place.
The Center for Studies of Uzbekistan and Educational Exchanges operates in Shanghai on the basis of the SCO Public Diplomacy Research Institute at Shanghai University. A number of agreements have been signed between major universities in both countries, the parties are interacting in such areas as the study of regional and international problems, training, exchange of students and trainees, etc.
Cultural and art workers of both countries are active participants in various exhibitions and cultural events held in China and Uzbekistan.
Recently, such an important area of international cooperation has been developing as the establishment of sister city relations between the cities of Shanghai and Tashkent, Xi’an and Samarkand, Shaanxi province and Samarkand region. A twin city is a form of close and long-term interaction between cities, regions and regions. This interaction can be based on a variety of factors such as cultural, commercial, economic, and others.
The interaction of twin cities provides society with more convenient and flexible opportunity to implement activities for common benefits.
The friendship societies "People’s Republic of China - countries of Central Asia" and "Uzbekistan-China" play a great role in strengthening cultural and humanitarian ties.
Taking into account our traditional historical relations and expanding cooperation in the cultural and humanitarian sphere, during this important summit, the President of our country, Shavkat Mirziyoyev proposed declaring next year the "Year of Culture and Art of the Peoples of Central Asia and China", while paying great attention to scientific and student exchanges, holding youth festivals, forums and sporting events.
In unison with the initiative of our President, President Xi Jinping proposed to hold a Friendship Forum peoples of China and the states of Central Asia and in the next 5-10 years to increase the number of sister cities in total up to 100 pairs.
Holding such forums will become an effective tool for interstate cooperation in the field of culture, will contribute to humanitarian, social, economic and infrastructural development, and enhance the status of the states of Central Asia and China in the international arena.
And considering that the youth of the countries of the region is our future, broad and deep cooperation in youth policy motivates young people from China and Central Asian countries to learn from each other, contribute to the peaceful development of the region, bear responsibility and fulfill missions, be great friends to continue friendship, good cooperation partners for the common prosperity of China and Central Asia.
Alisher Sabirov - Head of the Department of the International Institute of Central Asia, Candidate of Historical Sciences, Associate Professor of the Shenxi State Pedagogical University (PRC)