Successful 40th-Anniversary Delegation Visits Seattle from Tashkent

At our Navruz celebration in March, we mentioned that a delegation might come from Tashkent in June. Just a few weeks ago it was confirmed, and as a result we had a very successful visit June 23rd-27th with 11 delegates from Tashkent and one representative from the Uzbek embassy in Washington, D.C.

This was an outstanding way of celebrating our 40th anniversary with both our partners in Tashkent and the Uzbek embassy. The delegation participated in many meetings and enjoyed a dinner celebration with STSCA members and city of Seattle officials.

Tashkent Deputy Mayor I.D. Berdibekov led the delegation of city officials, including department heads from the Parks department, landscaping, commercial and non-commercial properties, external relations, and mahallah officials. It was a very diverse group! Further, the assistant to the Uzbek ambassador to the U.S. also joined us for the visit.

The delegation arrived on Sunday, June 23rd, and got right to work the next day. They met with the Seattle City Council, led by President Sally Clark, who greeted the delegation and presented them with a signed proclamation from the city proclaiming June 24th Seattle-Tashkent Day. The delegates were very pleased with this declaration! They also observed democracy in action through public testimony to the city council on many different issues. Mayor Mike McGinn also met with the delegation for an extended period of time and discussed common issues between our two cities. Then it was off to dinner at the home of two STSCA Board members to introduce the delegates to an American-style potluck gathering.

The next day continued with meetings with the Trade Development Alliance to discuss the economy of Seattle, how to attract businesses, public/private partnerships, and economic development. It was a time for sharing and questions, since both of our cities face the same struggles as large, metropolitan areas.

The afternoon was filled with meetings with the Seattle Parks Department and the Transportation/Streets/Landscaping department. Both cities discussed their efforts to improve and maintain parks as well as landscaping throughout our cities.

The evening culminated in a dinner with recognition by both cities of our 40th anniversary. Deputy Mayor Darryl Smith of Seattle and Deputy Mayor I.D. Berdibekov of Tashkent congratulated each city on its successes for the past 40 years. The two Seattle-Tashkent Sister City Association Co-Presidents, Diana Pearce and Dan Peterson, also discussed the STSCA’s accomplishments and recognized the achievements of STSCA members in the audience who have contributed to STSCA’s success over the past 40 years.

During the remainder of the delegation’s visit other activities were conducted–flowers were planted in Tashkent Park (on Capitol Hill), and tourist activities were organized at popular Seattle sites (Pike Place Market, the Aquarium, Space Needle, etc.) so that the delegates were made aware of the beauty and diversity of Seattle.

The Voice of America, located in Washington, D.C. has been a supporter of the STSCA for a long time. Our good friend, Navbahor Imamova, International Broadcaster of the Uzbek Service, watched the Seattle Channel broadcast of the speech by Deputy Mayor Berdibekov to the City Council, and summarized the exchange. You may read about this exchange here (in Uzbek only):

Deputy Mayor Berdibekov aptly summed up the group’s impressions: “The city of Seattle looks beautiful, all the meetings were productive, and I want to begin to plan for more much frequent meetings between our cities.”

We have the same hope and dreams.

All the best,

Dan Peterson
Seattle-Tashkent Sister City Association