The 1st National Urban Forum held in Azerbaijan ends successfully
A declaration was adopted on the results of the event at the end of the Forum.
The 1st Azerbaijan National Urban Forum on the "Sustainable Development Goals and the New Urban Agenda as engines of post-conflict reconstruction and rehabilitation” was held in Ağdam and Baku on October 5 and 6 in partnership with the State Committee on Urban Planning and Architecture of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) and with the organizational support of ADA University. More than 400 participants, including local and foreign government officials from 45 countries, representatives of relevant international organizations, field experts, scientists, as well as foreign partners and other stakeholders who have fraternal relations with the relevant cities and regions of Azerbaijan, attended the Forum.
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and the First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva attended the opening ceremony of the Forum. During his speech at the Forum, the head of state spoke about the urbicide committed in the territories liberated from occupation, the extensive reconstruction and restoration works carried out there, and the return of people to their native lands, and touched upon important issues in the direction of achieving lasting peace.
The National Urban Forum is held as part of the Action Plan on Urban Planning issues announced by the UN Settlements Programme for October 2022. Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director of the UN Settlements Programme, spoke and evaluated the Forum as a unique and successful platform in terms of sharing experience in the field of sustainable urban planning and expanding cooperative relations for ensuring sustainable development. She said that the organization she leads is ready to support restoration and reconstruction work in the territories of Azerbaijan and return of life to these territories to ensure peace and tranquillity.
Then, the work of the Forum was started with a special session, and a short documentary film about the reconstruction work in the territories liberated from occupation was demonstrated. During the session, the speakers stressed the importance of demining, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of the destroyed areas in the post-conflict period and discussed the importance of restoration work and the difficulties of overcoming crises in urban areas. The participants were given information about design documents and large-scale work carried out in the territories of Karabakh and Eastern Zangazur economic zones.
The 2nd day of the Azerbaijan National Urban Forum continued with sessions at ADA University. Speakers made presentations on the topics of environmentally sound and sustainable urban development, restoration of cultural and historical heritage in the post-conflict period, smarter, greener human settlements, and circular green economy, and discussed the most modern urban planning approaches, creation of human-oriented settlements, and ensuring of inclusiveness. During the panel discussion, proposals on the localization of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the possibilities of sustainable settlement were stated.
In the conclusion of the Forum, the participants expressed their approval for the high-level organization of the National Urban Forum held in our country. A final declaration on the results of the Azerbaijan National Urban Forum, which is planned to be held annually, was adopted. The Declared actions stated the purpose and importance of the Forum and emphasized the necessity of maintaining existing cooperative relations and establishing new partnerships. Thanks were given to the Government of Azerbaijan, the State Committee on Urban Planning and Architecture of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Office of the Special Representative of the President, ADA University, Ağdam and Baku cities, and the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) for hosting the event.
Note: See here for the text of the Declared actions.