1. AZERBAIJAN - THE ANCIENT «LAND OF FIRE»
Sources of the name of the country - Azerbaijan - go back to ancient times. Earliest of known written sources which mention it is the Syrian composition of the 6th century, The Chronicle of Karki De Bet Seloh. However, there is the reference to a much earlier source of the 8th century BC about Azerbaijan.
It is said in the chronicles: «...Arbak had built the fortification wall that is Adubad in the Median Empire named after him the Adorbaigan land”. “Ador Bad Agan” means “a place protected by a deity of fire”. Arabs, who came in the region for conquers and to spread Islam, named the country “Azer-Baigan“. The further genesis of the word is clear.
Azerbaijan is the region with unique geographical, climatic and geopolitical characteristics. The present Republic of Azerbaijan has rather small territory (86, 6 thousand sq.km) but it is possible to encounter here 9 of 11 basic climate zones existing. For example, on droughty and hot Absheron the climate was improved by parks and gardens planted for centuries, but the natural landscape consists of prickles, rocks, saline soils and steppes that become covered by grass only in spring. In other areas of the Republic, you can meet numerous sources of spring water (“bulag”), and the pure underground waters are brought on a surface by construction of special systems kagreze. There are Alpine zones, and woods with relic breeds of trees, where the climate is rainy even in the summer. There are vast steppes and high mountain ranges with the tops attracting climbers, tourists and those interested in wild nature.
In Azerbaijan one can meet plenty of curative, mineral and thermal waters, mud and oil for medical treatment. They are spread throughout Guba, Shamakhi - Ismayilli, Balakan - Gabala, Sheki - Zagatala, Nakhchivan, Ganjabasar regions. There are 6 national parks, 12 reserves and 17 protected areas occupying 2,4% from the total territory of the country and cover all basic climatic landscapes in Azerbaijan. Today, the plans for extension of area of protected nature territories up to 10 % of the total area of the republic are in progress.
5 national parks (Shirvan, Hirkan, Altyagaj, Ordubad, Ag-gel), 21 nature reserves and over two thousand trees (aged 100 to 400 years) are included in the state list of “The Natural Reserves of Azerbaijan” (as of 2004). The document also includes 37 geological and paleontological objects and more than 15000 ha of forests with endemic and relict flora. The list of relict flora includes eastern plane trees (aged 100 -500 years), dzelqua tree (aged 250 - 400 years), pistachio (aged 250 -400 years), karkas tree (aged 300 - 600 years), box tree (aged 200 -300 years), black nut (aged 200 - 300 years).
The natural reserves with the objects of paleontology include nine caves such as the Azykh Cave, where a Paleolithic site of primitive man was once discovered, the asphalt lake in Binagadi, the richest site with remains of relict flora and fauna (approximately 260 species). There are also many unique geological formations such as Tengi marble gorge, the Afurdja falls on the river Velvelichai and many others.
Source : http://www.tourism.az/index.php?menu=2&submenu=16&lang=eng
2. News and information about bid Baku 2016 Summer Olympic Games
10 April 2007
European Olympic Committee president Patrick Hickey visiting Azerbaijan held press conference today at the State Academy of Physical Training and Sports.
He stated that the rapid development of sports in Azerbaijan is obvious, APA reports.
"Each country has its own development program. Some kinds of sports differ in some countries for their development. The sport is improving very rapidly in Azerbaijan. Modern sport centres have been constructed here lately. I witnessed this improvement whilst participating in the opening ceremony of Masalli Sport Centre. I think this centre will be of great benefit for the people living in the region. They build such sport centres to develop the country more widely," he underscored.
EOC president didn't agree with such statements that Azerbaijan doesn't have much chance to host 2016 Olympic Games. He noted that there is enough appropriate conditions in Azerbaijan to host the Olympic Games.
"It should be considered that Winter Olympiad is held between two Summer Olympic Games. Other continent may also host Winter Games. Madrid, Prague as well as Baku have great chance. I think Azerbaijan has enough conditions to host Olympic Games in 2016. We discussed the issue at the meeting with Youth and Sports minister Azad Rehimov and National Olympic Committee vice-president Chingiz Huseynzade," he said.
Hickey also mentioned that the nomination of a city for the Olympic Games is not always successful.
"I would like to underline an important matter. Most cities joining the contests for the first time to host the games lost in the first round. In fact, only Atlanta won the contest in first chance," he said.
He noted that some other kinds of sports, especially karate, are likely to be included in Olympic Games.
"After each Olympic Games finish, assessment is made of each sport. Last time the baseball and softball went out. And karate, golf and rugby came in. 50% of vote is required to remove any sport from the program. Karate was not included because 2/3 majority of vote was required before. I think karate will be included in the program this time," he said.
Hickey stated that European Olympic Committee aids to the member countries equally. He noted that Azerbaijan Olympic Committee participates in several programs.
04 May 2007
"I am pleased to be in Baku. I have travelled 130 countries. It is my third visit to Azerbaijan. I have warm relations with friends in this country," International and European Bodybuilding Federation (IFBB, EFBB) president Rafael Santonja stated today at the press conference.
He noted European bodybuilding, body fitness and mixed pairs championship to start in Baku today will be very interesting.
"Euro championship has been organized with Azerbaijan's support under the control of IFBB and World Anti-doping Agency. That's why it promises to be very interesting," he said.
"In annual IFBB congress, we determine the countries candidate to host international competitions. There were many bidding for the European championship. Because of its technical opportunities and organizing experience, Azerbaijan won. This country has special influence among 176 IFBB member states," he underscored.
Santonja stressed Azerbaijan has good stimulation to host world bodybuilding championship in the future.
"Azerbaijan has put forward candidacy to host 2016 Summer Olympics. I think your country is able to organize any kind of sporting event. State leadership draws attention to the sport. I have no doubt Baku will host world bodybuilding championship in the future," he said. APA-Sport
Azerbaijan, Baku /corr. Trend Z.Safarov / Conducting 2016-Olympaid in Baku may take $20bln, said the Chairman of the National Olympic Committee of Azerbaijan, Chingiz Huseynzade, at press-conference, on 19 July in Baku.
He stressed that this is only initial figure and was made on the base of increasing expenses on the Games.
“Currently a group of economists is working on this issue and they should produce relevant accounts. The practice shows that each new Game appears more expensive than previous one,” Huseynzade said.
In addition, he stressed that if Baku can gain the victory in the forthcoming competition, it will put forward its candidature to organize 2010-Olympaid.
Georgia, Azerbaijan / Тrend corr N. Kertskhalia / The president of the Georgian National Olympic Committee, Badri Patarkatsishvili, called for Azerbaijan’s application to host the summer Olympic Games in 2016.
“I believe this to be a very serious application from the South Caucasus. Azerbaijan has the potential to host the games in that country, Patarkatsishvili stressed.
He stated that he was glad to hear about the initiative of the Azerbaijani President, Ilham Aliyev. “ Georgia has the experience to hold talks with the International Olympic Committee and we will offer any assistance to our kind neighbours,’ the president said.
Patarkatsishvili added that Georgia was ready to give maximum support to Azerbaijan in obtaining the right to host the Olympic Games 2016.
3. Some pictures about Azerbaijan Baku
Click for large size
"Shirvan Shakh" palace ( Old city )
"Icheri Sekher" ( Old city )
Academy Building in Baku ( Winter )
Baku New City
Baku Tbilisi St.
2006 Baku 31 December New Year
2006 Baku 31 December New Year 2-nd version
Anybody WELCOME TO AZERBAIJAN