The Azerbaijan State News Agency

CULTURE

Nij village - home to ancient Udi people, Orthodox Christian community in Azerbaijan’s Gabala district

Baku, February 14, AZERTAC

Azerbaijan is a country populated by many ethnicities, which is an evidence of tolerant environment and harmony that has existed here for centuries.

Azerbaijan has already become one of the centers of multiculturalism in the world, and this status is already recognized by the world community.

It is no coincidence that by President Ilham Aliyev’s Order 2016 was declared the year of Multiculturalism in Azerbaijan.

Having declared 2016 a Year of Multiculturalism, Azerbaijan, first of all, the country wanted to show that multiculturalism here is both a state policy and a way of life.

With a population of over 10 million people, Azerbaijan is home to 20 ethnic minorities, which have preserved their language, material and spiritual culture.

Udis, the Orthodox Christian community in the village of Nij, Azerbaijan`s Gabala district, are one of 26 local Alban tribes that established the Alban state (3rd century BC - 8th century AD).

Their central region is Karabakh - the area between the Kura and Aras rivers. There are 6,000 Udis living predominantly in the Nij village, which is mentioned by ancient Greek authors.

The largest number of Udi people reside in the village of Nij, Gabala district. This original village, in which a large number of ancient monuments have survived, is of great value for all who are interested in ethnotourism.

Located just over 20 kilometres south-west of Gabala, the village of Nij is home to the largest population of Udi people anywhere in the world.

Udis, Christian people directly descended from one of the main tribes living in Caucasian Albania, in fact, still speak an endangered language that is essentially the same as that of the ancient Albanians.

There are three churches and two mosques in Nij, which is home to 3,700 Udis.

Visitors can explore the history and culture of this warm community by visiting the beautifully restored 17th-century Albanian church (Chotari Church) which sits shaded by magnificent plane trees not far from the village centre.

Every year, Udis, celebrate Christmas in this ancient Church.

The renovation of the Cotari church in the village of Nij is a beautiful illustration of tolerance in Azerbaijan.

The Udi people have never encountered any discrimination or intolerance as other representatives of different nationalities and cultures who have always lived in peace and as one family in Azerbaijan.

While visiting the Gabala district on May 16, 2021, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva and their daughter Leyla Aliyeva also familiarized themselves with the restoration work done in the Albanian Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary located in Nij settlement of Gabala district.

The restoration of the Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary was started by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation in 2019 and completed during the 44-day war in November 2020.

President Ilham Aliyev once again confirmed Azerbaijan’s strong commitment to preserve its rich historic and cultural heritage saying: “The Udi people have a great historical heritage. You are performing divine services both in the territory of Gabala district and, at the same time, on liberated lands - both in Khudavang and Aghoghlan. There are also other temples belonging to the Udi people there. Most of them are either in a ruined or dilapidated condition. Therefore, we will restore them too. You will be able to visit those churches too. You have been to Khudavang several times.”

As the Ministry of Culture of Azerbaijan has repeatedly stated, along with mosques and other Islamic monuments in the liberated territories, the Christian heritage, irrespective of its origin will also be preserved, restored and put into operation at the highest level.

Finally, all the above-mentioned factors reaffirm the fact that the restoration and reconstruction of Azerbaijan’s historical and religious monuments, including churches and synagogues, is an integral part of the policy pursued by the Azerbaijani state in this area.

Share news on social media

Follow us on social network

China hosts 8th Ministerial on Climate Action

4.9 magnitude earthquake jolts Georgia

Shusha-hosted Global Media Forum features discussions on “Climate Action and Media”

AZERTAC and Vietnam's VNA to renew cooperation agreement

AZERTAC signs cooperation agreements with four foreign news agencies at Shusha Global Media Forum

Shusha-hosted Global Media Forum features panel session on impact of artificial intelligence on reality, media and disinformation

Oil prices rise in global markets

Biden says will not seek reelection as US president

West preparing for direct military conflict with Russia — Vucic

Second Shusha Global Media Forum discusses ways of building more resilient societies against disinformation

Global Media Forum participants tour Shusha

President Ilham Aliyev shares post on National Press Day

Executive Committee of the Turkish News Agencies Alliance holds its 1st meeting in Shusha

Second Shusha Global Media Forum discusses mapping the reach of disinformation

Problem of fake news manifests itself in the easiest and fastest forms thanks to technological development

Vugar Aliyev: ATNA should play the role of an institution where news of the Turkic world is collected

Mikhail Gusman: Information warfare is a global phenomenon ındependent of political regimes

Azerbaijan Army positions in Kalbajar direction were subjected to fire

Assistant to the President: Sharing accurate information is crucial for society

Hikmet Hajiyev: We faced a powerful disinformation campaign regarding COP29

Hikmet Hajiyev: Disinformation turned into psychological warfare against the Azerbaijani people VIDEO

Shusha hosted second Global Media Forum
 President Ilham Aliyev attended the Forum VIDEO

President: We always feel brotherly support from Pakistani media

President: We could have waited 17 more years if necessary for liberation of our lands

President of Azerbaijan: We are very actively trying to activate our cooperation with members of African Union

President Ilham Aliyev: Our target is to double supply of Azerbaijani gas to Europe

President of Azerbaijan: For the sake of peace and the liberation of our territories, I had to set aside all my feelings and all my emotions

President Ilham Aliyev: I hope that after elections there will be more understanding in Washington and Europe about Azerbaijan

Reception was held in honor of participants of second Shusha Global Media Forum

Azerbaijani army personnel involved in “Birlestik-2024” exercise return to motherland, Defense Ministry

Azerbaijan Chess Federation and FIDE discuss future prospects of cooperation

President of Azerbaijan: All the leaders in UK were asking about Armenia and the peace treaty

Azerbaijani President: Our relations with the United States were pretty stable

President Ilham Aliyev: Prime Minister Pashinyan refused to meet with me in the U.K.

President of Azerbaijan: There is a progress in process of normalization of relations with Armenia VIDEO

President Ilham Aliyev: We now actively work with developing countries in order to build bridges between Global South and Global North

President of Azerbaijan: Our COP Team is working very efficiently

Arab News: In run-up to major event, COP29, host nation Azerbaijan has been working hard to achieve its green development goals

President of Azerbaijan: Some countries still suffer from colonialism, and we want to help them

President: Strong ties in the region allowed us to overcome most of our economic problems

President Ilham Aliyev: We will never forget the occupation, the victims, or our great Victory

Study shows promise for a universal influenza vaccine

President: We would prefer coverage of events in our country and in neighborhood to be objective

President of Azerbaijan: There are simply no issues that need to be resolved in bilateral relations with Russia

Baku to host Uzbek Cinema Days

President Ilham Aliyev: False information, disinformation, manipulation of facts, and false narratives are all things we have faced for many years VIDEO

Azerbaijani powerlifter earns Paralympic berth

President Ilham Aliyev: We are now facing a historical transformation in the Southern Caucasus

North China bridge collapse kills 11, leaves over 30 missing

Participants of 2nd Shusha Global Media Forum arrive in Azerbaijan's cultural capital

Turkish parliament passes resolution regarding 50th anniversary of Cyprus Peace Operation

Türkiye's President Erdogan arrives in Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus

Despite curfew, deaths mount in Bangladesh student protests over government jobs quota

Participants of 2nd Shusha Global Media Forum arrive in Fuzuli

Turkish arctic expedition seeks crucial insights into climate change

Azerbaijani oil price down in global markets

Remains of medieval palace where popes lived possibly found in Rome

National Defense University holds graduation ceremony of basic English language course

Landmine explosion injures civilians in Azerbaijan’s Kalbajar district

Oil prices down in world markets

® Semi-final round of public speaking contest comes to an end

COP29 Academy officially inaugurated

Shusha to host 2nd Global Media Forum on fight against disinformation on July 20-22

UN Climate Change Executive Secretary: COP29 gives us great hope

Azerbaijani wrestlers to compete for Timisoara Beach Wrestling World Series glory

Nigar Arpadarai: We are striving to ensure that all partners contribute to COP29

Mukhtar Babayev: As COP29 Presidency, we have put forward initiatives that will incorporate regional action

Mazahir Panahov: Central Election Commission registered candidacies of 806 persons for parliamentary seats

Azerbaijani judokas at Paris 2024 Paralympics: List of qualified Para judokas

Azerbaijan to host “LAW & CLIMATE” international conference ahead of COP29

Azerbaijan’s Central Election Commission registers authorized representatives from five more political parties

COP29 Azerbaijan Operating Company hosts meeting with local SME representatives to launch COP29 partnership programme

Mass IT outage affects airlines, hospitals, media and banks

Baku hosts event dedicated to 149th anniversary of National Press

Azerbaijani chess player takes lead at Serbia Open 2024

President Ilham Aliyev’s speech at 4th summit of European Political Community in spotlight of Georgian media

AC Milan sign Spanish striker Alvaro Morata from Atletico de Madrid

The Nation: Azerbaijan to beautify multiple places in Islamabad

China launches new Earth observation satellite VIDEO

World’s largest uncontacted indigenous tribe spotted evading loggers in Peruvian Amazon

Australia hit by ‘large-scale technical outage’

Azerbaijan, Saudi Arabia explore demining cooperation

Denmark coach Kasper Hjulmand resigns after EURO 2024 exit

Western Azerbaijan Community: France's arms sale to Armenia serves to push this country to a new war against Azerbaijan

Chinese lab uses AI to provide better weather forecasts

Azerbaijani badminton players to compete at EUG2024

Türkiye signs deal for oil and gas exploration in Somalian offshore

Military Police Department holds seminar, Defense Ministry

Suez Canal revenue drops as some shippers shun Red Sea

Oil prices down in world markets

Scientists find out why dance therapy works for those with neurological disorders

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry: Macron's bias against Azerbaijan creates tension in the region

Azerbaijan, Switzerland discuss prospects for educational cooperation

Azerbaijani oil price rises in global markets

Trump formally accepts nomination as Republican presidential candidate

Chamber of Commerce and Industry: Bulgaria Advances in Energy Transition and Prosperity Rankings

President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev met with Chancellor of Germany Olaf Scholz in Oxford VIDEO

Azerbaijani karate fighter triumphs at EUG2024

President Ilham Aliyev: We supply our oil to very sensitive destinations which are largely dependent on Azerbaijani crude

® Buy a smartphone from Bakcell with an exclusive offer