Azerbaijan

1 Recognition of the Genocide

1.1 Recognition, official texts

In Azerbaijan, the Holocaust is recognised as such but there is no information whether the Roma are recognised or not as victims of the Genocide.

1.2 Data (camps locations, Remembrance places, measures etc.)

Azerbaijan observes 27th January as the “Day of the Victims of the Holocaust Genocide”.

The day was chosen to coincide with the International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. Holocaust victims are also commemorated during the events held on the anniversary of the victory over fascism, celebrated each year on 9th May.

In particular, the State Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan for the Work with Religious Organisations participates each 27th January in meetings organised by Jewish communities to commemorate the Holocaust. The State Committee for the Work with Religious Organisations recommends to religious communities in Azerbaijan that they provide the public with information about national genocide days, hold commemorative ceremonies and recognize the Holocaust in their religious services. The day has been commemorated every year since the restoration of Azerbaijan’s independence.

1.3 Specialised institution, commission, research centre etc., dealing with this issue

There is no specialised institution or research centre dealing only with the issue of the Genocide of the Roma.

1.4 Official initiatives (campaigns, actions, projects, commemoration days, museums)

In Azerbaijan there is no special commemoration day of the Genocide of the Roma.

Each year, in connection with the Holocaust Memorial Day, the “Alley of Martyrs” in Baku is the site of visits. Meetings, roundtables, conferences and other gatherings are organised in various State, public and private institutions, in both Muslim and other communities. In some instances, commemoration of Holocaust victims is held concurrently with remembrance of victims of other events and tragedies occurring in Azerbaijan in the twentieth century.

On 17th October 2012, an International Symposium was held in Baku on “The Role of Azerbaijan in Preventing Holocaust in the Caucasus during the Second World War”. The government also encourages non-governmental organizations to conduct events to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day in Azerbaijan. One example of an unofficial event to commemorate the Holocaust was a meeting organized between the Baku Office of the United Nations and the Ministry of Youth and Sport, which took place on 28 January 2008.

State secondary schools and institutions of higher education are involved in commemoration activities.

2 Teaching about the Genocide of the Roma

2.1 Inclusion of the topic in the school curriculum

The Genocide of the Roma is not included in the school curriculum. In its response to the ODIHR's request for information, the Ministry of Education reported that Holocaust education is not currently reflected in the national school curriculum.

Information was provided by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

However, in the two state-funded Jewish schools, Xabad Or-Avner and School No. 46, there are special courses on the subject at both primary and secondary levels. These schools also commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day through theatrical exhibitions and poetry devoted to the Holocaust.

2.2 Inclusion of the topic in the school textbooks

Holocaust education is currently not included in the school textbooks.

However, the Service of the State Counsellor of the Republic of Azerbaijan for Multiculturalism, Interethnic and Religious Affairs has prepared two university courses that cover the subject of the Jews in Azerbaijan, including an undergraduate-level course on “Introduction to Multiculturalism”, and a postgraduate-level course on “Azerbaijani Multiculturalism”. These courses will be implemented in most universities in Azerbaijan from early 2015. (See OSCE report: “Holocaust Memorial Days: An overview of remembrance and education in the OSCE region”, page 18).

2.3 Training of teachers and education professionals

There is no information available whether teacher trainings have been organised so far. 

Holocaust education and remembrance were the main topics of a five-day study visit of Azerbaijani officials to the Netherlands, organized by OSCE Project Co-ordinator in Baku, in co-operation with the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, which took place from 15 to 20 December 2014.
The Azerbaijani delegation consisted of eight representatives from the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Baku International Multiculturalism Centre. Read more

2.4 Particular activities undertaken at the level of education institutions

State secondary schools and institutions of higher education are involved in commemoration activities on 27th January and 9th May.

2.5 Remembrance day

In Azerbaijan, there is no special commemoration day of the Genocide of the Roma.
However, 27th January is observed as the “Day of the Victims of the Holocaust Genocide”.
3 Official contacts and resource persons

3.1 Responsible person in the Ministry of Education

There is no responsible person in the Ministry of Education on the topic of the Genocide of the Roma or on the topic of the Holocaust in general.

49 Khatai Avenue
Baku
Azerbaijan Republic
AZ-1008
Telephone: (+ 99412) 599-11-55 Fax: (+ 99412) 496-34-83

3.2 Resource persons - list of experts and historians

Marat KANGARLINSKI, Head of Department for Humanitarian and Social Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan

4 Initiatives of the civil society

4.1 Relevant projects having a real impact on the people and/or the wide public

Numerous seminars, exhibitions and documentary films are devoted to the theme of the Holocaust.
On 27th January 2012, the United Nations Department of Public Information in Azerbaijan, together with the Embassy of Israel, organised an event that included an exhibition and a film.  
5 Point of view of the Roma community - including survivors' testimonies

According to the available information, currently there are no NGOs or any other organisation dealing with Roma rights.