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    • Farewell ceremony for ex-President of ECI
      Farewell ceremony for ex-President of ECI
      The ECO Secretary General, Dr. Hadi Soleimanpour bade a farewell lunch in honour of Dr. Mohammad Mahdi Mazaheri, at the end of his tenure as head of ECO Cultural institute. The farewell ceremony, held on 25 December 2019 at ECO Secretariat, was attended by the Honorable Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance of Islamic Republic of Iran, spokesman of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Secretary General of Supreme Council of Iran's Free Trade, Industrial and Special Economic Zones as well as ECO Ambassadors in Tehran.

      The ECO Secretary General, during the event while welcoming the new President of ECO Cultural Institute Mr. Sarvar Bakhti, appreciated the excellent services of Dr. Mazaheri, and acknowledged his outstanding and valuable contributions aimed at expanding the scope and activities amongst the Member States under ECO's cultural agenda.

      H.E. Dr. Seyyed Abbas Salehi, honorable Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance of the Islamic Republic of Iran also admired the relevant activities of ECI, especially during the tenure of Dr. Mazaheri. He added that the relevant capacities and potentials of the Member States, who hold common values and history as well as maintain excellent cultural relations, could be exploited for the mutual benefit and interest of the region.

      The Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey, Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikstan, Ambassador Bizmark Director General for ECO and Multilateral Economic Cooperation of Iran Foreign Ministry, and representatives from other ECO countries, in their respective statements praised the good offices of Dr. Mazaheri for paying attention to broader aspects of cultural capacities of ECO countries during his tenure which not only amplified the cultural activities between Member States but also it went beyond the ECO region and interacted with different cultures in other regions.
      Mr. Seyed Abbas Mousavi, distinguished Spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran also expressed his appreciation and gratitude to Dr. Mazaheri for the successful completion of his tenure and making effective and meaningful initiatives during his presidency of ECI.
      Highlighting the strong nexus of culture and various aspects of economy for well-being of ECO region, Dr. Morteza Bank, Advisor to president of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Secretary of Supreme Council of Iran's Free Trade, Industrial and Special Economic Zones, appreciated the efforts and struggles of Mr. Mazaheri to improve and accelerate cultural activities as well as engagements amongst the Member States. He further expressed his organisation's readiness to increase cooperation with ECO in all possible areas.

      Dr. Mohammad Mahdi Mazaheri expressed his appreciation to ECO Secretary General for arranging the farewell party and extended support to ECI and in a short statement briefed the audiences about plans, programs and substantial achievements during his tenure. He unveiled that during his term a diverse range of programs owing to different topics such as women, peace, family, poetry and literature; painting, illustration and visual arts exhibitions alongside research activities in different languages have been carried out. He added that during recent years, fruitful interactions with some international cultural institutions have been tailored.

      ECO Cultural Institute (ECI) is affiliated with ECO and aims at fostering understanding and the preservation of the rich cultural heritage of its members through common projects in the field of the media, literature, art, philosophy, sport and education.

      Mr. Sarvar Bakhti, nominated by the Republic of Tajikistan has commenced his tenure as new president of ECO Cultural Institute from 22 December 2019.

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