Nowruz is a celebration of the new year celebrated by many nations. It is the day of the spring equinox. We celebrate revival, friendship, peace and purity. We also commemorate solidarity and forgiveness. Because on that day we also ask for forgiveness. Nowruz is all about renewal, all about spring and the New Year, it dates back to ancient times, especially for Uzbekistan which is the homeland of Nowruz celebrities. It represents the wealth of our traditions and history. It’s not only about the dancing. It’s not only about the food. It’s about our culture, heritage, how we treat people, how we treat the upcoming New Year a new season in our lives,
and how we treat other people. Bozar has a long tradition presenting music and traditions of the entire world. And we try to connect cultures Nowruz is ideal for this because the whole eurasian continent celebrates it It was here before the continent was christianised It became easter And everyone can see themselves in it. In Kazahkstan , we start to celebrate on 14 March Particularly in western regions And preparing the Nowruz consists in cleaning around the whole house I would say it is an ecological celebration because we clean water streams and our lands We liberate water sources from mud and snow It is actually a meteorological celebration for Kazahkstan because people congratulate each other for having survived winter. Winter being a very difficult season in this country. Nowruz is one of the oldest human festivals. It goes back 4,000 to 5,000 years, and is one of the prehistoric festivals that is still widely celebrated throughout the world. Nowruz is 3,000 years old,
so it has been around longer than the religion Still, in saying hello to the stars and the fire element gives it a spiritual element. But I think that if we look on the fringes of Europe, the borders of Europe, from Norway to the Balkans, people still feel connected to nature. And I think that this connection, living alongside nature, and the start of Nowruz, the longer days, the trees growing, those things alone can be recognised by everyone and across all religions. In Kazahkstan, many people gather in spring to greet each other. They gather after a certain period during which they did not see each other because it was the winter and it was cold. And they rekindle their relations but they need to do so by asking for forgiveness. For me, it is very emotional to be celebrating Nawruz in the centre of Europe in Brussels Because only 35 years ago, it would have been extraordinary and hardly imaginable to celebrate Nowruz. It was a celebration that was banned by the Soviet Union. But we have revived it and celebrating it here is a very emotional moment.