During her speech at the Dialogue of Cultures – Chinghiz Aitmatov’s Legacy conference, Deputy Coordinator of the RIW Group Elana Eshba praised Chinghiz Aitmatov’s role in promoting dialogue between different ethnic and cultural communities.

“Mr. Aitmatov has always sought – both as an author and as a diplomat – to focus on the values that bring people together, not what brings us apart,” she told the forum.

The Turkish city of Istanbul hosted a conference on the role of Chinghiz Aitmatov’s legacy in promoting dialogue between cultures on March 23- 24, 2018. The event co-sponsored by the Russia – Islamic World group, IRCICA and Turkey’s Writers Union was the latest in a series of celebrations set to mark the 90th anniversary since the birth of the world renowned Soviet and Kyrgyz author.

Ms. Eshba also recalled Mr. Aitmatov was one of the founding fathers of the RIW group. In his efforts, he was driven by the idea that it is important to pass on to the next generation the basic human values and the message of human unity regardless of ethnic or religious affiliation.

“it might be one of the reasons for becoming a member of the RIW GRoup and working hard to prove that we are really close and it is vital to unite in the face of common threats.”

Chinghiz Aitmatov also spoke highly of Russia’s role in the process in his interviews. “It is symbolic that it is Russia who initiated the meeting of the International Group of Strategic Vision… It is destiny itself that placed Russia in a critically important historical and geographical context… Russia is not just a Christian nation, it is also a country with a very long Islamic tradition. It is history that made Russia play the balancing act between East and West,” he said during the 2006 meeting of the Group.

Earlier in August of 2017, the Group staged the inaugural edition of the Aitmatov Readings: Dialogue of Cultures forum in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.