Nowruz, a World Heritage

Nowruz is the first day of spring and the beginning of new year in a huge geographical area incluing Black Sea region, central and western Asia. Nowruz was originally determined by astronomical calculations and it marks March 21. In 2009 Nowruz was registered on the list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as the new year celebrated by seven countries of Azerbaijan, India, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Turkey, and Uzbekistan.

On November 30, 2016, during the 11th session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, in Ethiopia, five more countries were added to the list of multinational case of Nowruz making it a total of twelve internationalities that celebrate their New Year on the spring equinox every year.

Nowruz celebration is observed by Iran, Albania, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, China (by Turkic peoples and Tajiks), Georgia, India (by Parsis), Iraq (by Kurds and Turkmens), Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Syria (by Kurds), Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

There are many rites, local traditions, and games that go with the Nowruz festival and they vary in every region. It has been more than 3000 years that people are celebrating Nowruz. Nowruz meaning new day represents reconciliation, friendship, and peace among all people and communities.

Nowruz, a World Heritage

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