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  issue 1, year XVI, 2009

H. E. MR. ALI-AKBAR HOSRAVI, CHARGE D'AFFAIRES OF THE EMBASSY OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN TO BULGARIA, SPECIALLY FOR THE "EUROPE 2001" MAGAZINE

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ALI AGANURI: EXTENDING AND DEVELOPING OF THE BILATERAL RELATIONS
Interview by "Europe 2001" Magazine

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CULTURAL CENTER OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN IN SOFIA

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The most important task of the Cultural Center of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Sofia is to improve the bilateral relations in the scope of culture between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Republic of Bulgaria. The center was established in 1996. It presents today's Iran, the achievements of the Islamic revolution in Iran, organizes scientific and international cultural conferences, contacts the media, works in the sphere of tourism, organizes courses in Persian, sends students and lecturers on specialized training in Iran and many more.

RELATIONS BETWEEN THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN AND THE REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA
Ministry of foreign affairs of Bulgaria, "AAO" Department

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Diplomatic relations between Bulgaria and Iran were established for the first time in 1897. During World War II they were broken off by Iran on September 17th 1941 at the insistence of USSR and England. The diplomatic relations between the two countries were reestablished on December 19th 1961. At the present moment ambassador of Bulgaria to Iran is Mr. Plamen Shukyurliev. Charge D'affaires of Iran to Bulgaria is Mr. Ali Akbar Hosravi.

ECONOMY OF THE FUTURE
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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There are three types of property in Iran - state property, private property and cooperative property. The state enterprise forms more than 50 % of the capital and the production of the country, including oil industry, ore output, hydroelectric power stations, air transportation, car industry, food processing industry etc. Privatization and carrying on a concession of the state property move onwards very quickly. The main trade partners of Iran are China, India, Germany, South Korea, Japan, France, Russia and Italy. Foreign direct investment in the country has increased for the last year. In 2007 it reached a record-breaking value of 10,2 milliard dollars. It is directed to power engineering, transportation, oil industry, pharmaceutics, etc.

IRAN: A VISITING CARD

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RELIGIONS IN IRAN
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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Islam is the official religion in Iran. 91 % of the Muslims in the country are followers of the Shia Islam, although there are Sunni Muslims, too. Approximately 2 % of the population of Iran is Christian and they have representatives in the Parliament. A lot of Jews live in Iran, too. The ancient religion of Iran is called Zoroastrism. The followers of this religion worship the god Ahura Mazda and build special temples called "temples of fire".

MORE THAN 7 THOUSAND YEARS CIVILIZATION
By materials of the foreign press

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Iran is one of the most ancient countries in the world. Archaeological excavations at the Iranian plateau indicate that people lived there earlier than 10 000 BC. The influence of the Iranian culture through the centuries has reached far spots of the planet - from the valley of the river Nile to the heart of Europe. Cultures from Africa, Asia and Europe interweave in the lands of Iran. Iran is situated along the Silk Road and it is part of Marco Polo's traveling route to China. In his reports the famous traveler of Venice describes the nature, the people and the conditions of living in the country, as he saw them.

THE ISLAMIC REVOLUTION IN IRAN ON PAGES OF HISTORY
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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Since the beginning of the 60's Ruhollah Khomeini's sermons incited to revolution considerable part of the Iranian population. The shah underestimated the power of the people's discontent and after long protests he was forced to leave the country. After a referendum in 1979 Iran was pronounced an Islamic republic governed by ayatollah Khomeini and a Council of Guardians.

THE MAGIC OF PERSIA
By materials of the foreign press

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Until 1935 Iran was called Persia. Gorgeous palaces and citadels of the ancient Persian civilization can be seen today all over the country and some of them have been preserved almost untouched for thousands of years. Iran is situated at the crossroads of civilizations and that is why it combines the influence of dozens of cultures, religions and traditions. The historical spots, along with the combination of mountains and sea coasts, turn Iran into a very interesting though not quite well known destination

THE PERSIAN ASTRONOMERS: TO UNRIDDLE THE SKY
By Zdravka Mihailova

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2009 was pronounced for the Year of astronomy by the United Nations and UNESCO. The occasion is the 400-year anniversary since Galileo Galilei made his first astronomical observations in 1609. 130 countries will participate in the events. Iran takes part along with the other countries. The main idea of the year is that all the people of the world live under one and the same sky and they should live together in peace. Astronomy took a very important place in the ancient Persian culture. Today the country works on acquiring again the name in astronomy that it had centuries ago.

TEHRAN
By materials of the foreign press

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Spread over more than 1200 square meters, Tehran is the biggest city in the Middle East. Today its population is more than 14 million people, while in 1923 it was only 210 thousand. It became the capital of Iran at the end of XVIII century and since then it has been incessantly modernizing and urbanizing. It is famous for its gorgeous museums, art centers, palaces and many ski resorts, situated on the slopes of the Alborz Mountain, not far from the city. Moreover, the capital is not made only of concrete and asphalt. It has more than 800 well-kept parks.

BORJ-E MILAD: THE HIGHEST TOWER IN THE MIDDLE EAST
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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Borj-e Milad is a multifunctional skyscraper, situated in the North-West part of Tehran. With its height of 435 m from the foundations to the top of the antenna Borj-e Milad is the highest tower in the Middle East, the fourth in height telecommunication tower and, as a whole, the eight in height tower in the world.

ELEGANCE MADE OF COLOURS AND SHAPES
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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Different kinds of typical Iranian art are presented in this article. The art of "kalamzani" has a seven-thousand-year history and it is still practiced today. It resembles wood-carving, embossing and arabesque. Iran is famous for its miniatures and calligraphy, too. "Hatamkari" is a specific way of wood incrustation. But what Iran is mostly famous for, is the Persian carpet, which has turned into a symbol of the country.

CINEMA IN IRAN
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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The first cine-camera was imported in Iran during the reign of shah Mozafareddin in 1901. This year is considered the beginning of Iranian cinema, although the first cinema hall in Iran was built in 1913. The first Iranian movie with sound "The girl from Lur" was shot in 1933 in Bombay by Abdulhosein Sepenta.

THE ANCIENT TRADITIONS - FIRE, AIR AND WATER
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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Invariable parts of the life of the Iranians are not only the Islamic holidays, but the amazing ancient holidays, too. Some of them, for example the Iranian New Year Nouruz, have more than two thousand years history. Jumping over fire, letting germs float in the stream of rivers and outdoor picnics symbolize the interweaving of the elements, out of which the spirit of Iranian traditions can be felt.

THE IRANIAN CUISINE
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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The highly varied climate is the reason why in different regions of Iran you will be welcomed in many different ways. If you go to Azerbaijan, you will be served wild honey and nougat, in the city of Qom - sohan (a kind of a sweet), in Kerman - pistachio, in the south - dates, in Yazd - baklava and qottab (a kind of khalva), in Khorasan - saffron (called "the red gold"), in Isfahan - gyaz and poolaki (sweets), in Save - enormous pomegranates.

THE HOMELAND OF CHESS
By materials of the Cultural Center of Iran, Sofia

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Many kinds of sports are practiced in Iran - traditional, as well as modern ones. For example, Tehran was the first city in the Middle East to become the host of the Asian games in 1971. Until today Iran still plays host and takes place in big international sports events.

FAMOUS PERSONALITIES FROM IRAN

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PHOTOATELIER PRESENTS
SEYED ALI SEYEDI

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LITART PRESENTS
FERDOWSI

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SUHRAB SEPEHRI

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IVAN PEYCHEV

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ATELIER PRESENTS
THE MUSIC OF AUSTRIA AND ITS CAPITAL THROUGH THE EYE OF AN ARTIST
By Dochka Kisyova-Gogova

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GANKA SLAVOVA: SILKY DREAMS

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Translated by
Maria Angelova
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