About Uzbekistan

UNESCO World Heritage Committee prolongs the deadline for Uzbekistan on the city plan works in Shakhrisabz
11 August 2021
UNESCO World Heritage Committee prolongs the deadline for Uzbekistan on the city plan works in Shakhrisabz

The World Heritage Committee of UNESCO prolonged the deadline for completing the city plan works in Shakhrisabz city of Uzbekistan for the period of one more year. This decision has been made based on the quarantine restrictions in the country during 2020.

The expanded 44th session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee took place in the city of Fujou, China. The Uzbek delegation led by the Deputy Prime Minister, the Minister of Tourism and Sports of Uzbekistan Aziz Abdukhakimov participated in the event in an online format. The delegation made a detailed presentation of the works held in the city of Shakhrisabz on preservation, protection and promotion of the rich cultural heritage of Uzbekistan.

The Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz was nominated as a “Monument of Significance for the Republic” in 1973. The town was entered on the List of Historic Towns under Resolution N°339 of the Council of Ministers of Uzbekistan in 1973.

The historic centre of Shakhrisyabz contains a collection of exceptional monuments and ancient quarters which bear witness to the city's secular development and particularly to the period of its apogee, under the rule of Amir Temur and the Timurids, in the 15th-16th century.

Besides on the prolongation decision of the works in Shakhrisabz, several other positive resolutions were adopted during the 44-th Session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee. The resolutions cover the world heritage objects of “Historical part of Shakhrisabz”, “Samarkand – a crossroad of cultures”, “Historical centre of Bukhara” and “Ichan Kala” – the historical part of Khiva. In regards to the multinational objects of UNESCO World Heritage List “The Wester Tian-Shan” – the natural heritage with the participation of Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan was discussed.

A newly updated list of new objects of Uzbekistan with the possibility to be admitted in the World Heritage List was also approved during the meeting. The new list for Uzbekistan consists of 32 objects, which is a quite big number, considering the objects in Russia make only 28, 17 in Ukraine, 17 in Tajikistan, 14 in Kazakhstan, 10 in Turkmenistan, 10 in Azerbaijan, 4 in Armenia and 2 in Kyrgyzstan.

The Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz, located in the southern part of Uzbekistan, is over 2000 years old and was the cultural and political centre of the Kesh region during the 14th and 15th centuries.

“A collection of exceptional monuments and ancient quarters can be found within the medieval walls, parts of which still remain. The Historic Centre of Shakhrisabz bears witness to the city’s secular development and to centuries of its history, and particularly to the period of its apogee, under the empire of Temur, in the 15th century. Construction of elements continued in Shakhrisyabz throughout different time periods, lending a unique character to the place by the succession of different architectural styles. Despite the inroads of time, the remaining vestiges are still impressive in the harmony and strength of styles, enriching addition to the architectural heritage of Central Asia and the Islamic world” – as written on the UNESCO website about Shakhrisabz.

“The monuments and buildings of Shakhrisabz are a testimony to the architecture and city planning of the Timurid period. The historic centre has retained its original appearance. Most of the buildings and decorative art have been well preserved and are in their original state and care has been taken in restoration works to ensure the use of traditional materials and techniques”. 

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Did you know?

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Uzbekistan is the world capital of melons. They have in excess of 150 different varieties, which form a staple part of the local diet, served fresh in the summer and eaten dried through the winter.

It is Uzbek tradition that the most respected guest be seated farthest from the house’s entrance.

Tashkent’s metro features chandeliers, marble pillars and ceilings, granite, and engraved metal. It has been called one of the most beautiful train stations in the world.

The Uzbek master chef is able to cook in just one caldron enough plov to serve a thousand men.

When you are a host to someone, it is your duty to fill their cups with for the whole time they are with you.  What you must not do, however, is to fill their cup more than half-full.  If you do that as a mistake, say it is a mistake immediately.  Doing it means you want them to leave.  Wow!  Amazing, right?

To Uzbeks, respect means a whole lot.  For this reason they love it if, even as foreigners, you endeavour to add the respectful suffix opa after a woman's name; and aka after a man's.  Example: Linda-opa and David-aka.  You could also use hon and jon respectively.

Having been an historic crossroads for centuries as part of various ancient empires, Uzbekistan’s food is very eclectic. It has its roots in Iranian, Arab, Indian, Russian and Chinese cuisine.

Though identified with the Persia, the Zoroastrism probably originated in Bactria or Sogdiana. Many distinguished scholars share an opinion that Zoroastrianism had originated in the ancient Khorezm. Indeed, today in the world there were found 63 Zoroastrian monuments, including those in Iran, India, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Thirty-eight of them are in Uzbekistan, whereas 17 of these monuments are located in Khorezm.

One of Islam's most sacred relics - the world's oldest Koran that was compiled in Medina by Othman, the third caliph or Muslim leader, is kept in Tashkent. It was completed in the year 651, only 19 years after Muhammad's death. 

Tashkent is the only megapolis in the world where public transport is totally comprised of Mercedes buses. And due to low urban air polution it is one of the few cities where one can still see the stars in the sky.

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Uzbekistan is the only country in the world all of whose neighbours have their names ending in STAN. This is also the only country in Central Asia that borders all of the countries of this region

Uzbeks are the third populous Turkik ethnicity in the world after Turks and Azeris (leaving both in Azerbaijan and Iran)

Did you know that there was silk money in Khiva? Super interesting right? Of course, but the best part of having silk money was that it could be sewn into your clothing.

Famous Islamic physician Ibn Sina (Avicenna in the Latin world) who was born near Bukhara was the one of the first people to advocate using women’s hair as suture material – about 1400 years ago.

Uzbekistan has a long and bloody history. The most notorious leader of Uzbekistan was Timur (or Tamerlane) who claimed descent from Genghis Khan. His military campaigns have been credited for wiping out some 5% of the world’s population at the time.

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Uzbekistan has been ranked one of the safest countries in the world, according to a new global poll. The annual Gallup Global Law and Order asked if people felt safe walking at night and whether they had been victims of crime. The survey placed Uzbekistan 5th out of 135 countries, while the UK was 21st and the US 35th. Top five safest countries:

  • Singapore
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