Thursday, April 7, 2016

Opinion: Belarus' friendship society helps build a solid basis for a peaceful future

Belarus News (BelTA)

Ivanova image from article

MINSK, 7 April (BelTA) – The Belarusian society for friendship and cultural ties with foreign countries helps build a solid basis for a peaceful future, chairwoman of the society Nina Ivanova told BelTA. 

The organization, which celebrates its 90th anniversary on 7 April, implements programs with the help of 40 societies for friendship with different countries. The strengthening of friendship ties between people living in different cultural, social and political environments helps build a solid basis for a peaceful future, Nina Ivanova pointed out. The practice of public diplomacy demonstrates that such contacts do not depend on changes in the political landscape, she added. 

The Days of Belarusian Culture are held annually in different countries. In 2016 China will play host to the event. In cooperation with the Children of Chernobyl Fund of Germany's Lower Saxony and the Belarusian Embassy in Germany, the Belarusian friendship society will hold the Days of Belarusian Culture in this country to mark the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear tragedy. For its part, Belarus will host the Days of Culture of Austria, Switzerland, and Vietnam. 

The Belarusian friendship society is grateful to its foreign partners for the assistance they have been providing to Belarusians in the post-Chernobyl period, for the medical equipment, medications, and other types of humanitarian aid. Many Belarusian children from Chernobyl-affected regions have had a chance to improve their health in Italian, German, Austrian, French, and Polish families. 

Every new year brings tangible results in international regional cooperation, Nina Ivanova added. The society organized bilateral meetings of twin towns and cities of Belarus and Latvia, Germany, Russia, and Poland. “The Chinese, German, French, Japanese, Russian, Vietnamese, Austrian and other societies for friendship with Belarus have become our reliable partners,” Nina Ivanova said. 

The Belarusian society for friendship and cultural ties with foreign countries was established in 1926. Such eminent Belarusian people of art as Yanka Kupala, Yakub Kolas, Tishka Gartny, and Mikhas Charot stood at the origin of the society. Over the past ninety years, the organizations has been promoting the Belarusian culture abroad and familiarizing Belarusians with the cultural and spiritual heritage of other countries. The society contributes to cooperation of Belarusian cities and towns with foreign ones, implements humanitarian programs to provide medical centers with equipment, and organizes tours to improve children's health in cooperation with foreign partners. 

The friendship societies in Belarus are headed by recognized professionals working in the field of art, science and culture. At present, such organizations have around a thousand proactive citizens as their members.

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