Yesterday (12 May) Azerbaijanis held a traditional ‘Kharibulbul’ music festival in Shusha, coinciding with the end of the muslim month of Ramadan. The Citadel town in Nagorno-Karabakh was at the centre of some of the heaviest fighting in the 44-day Karabakh war last autumn, taken under Azerbaijani control in the final days of the war.
Noting Shusha’s special significance to Azerbaijanis, President Ilham Aliyev last week declared it Azerbaijan’s Cultural capital. Yesterday’s event ended with a massive fireworks display that could also be seen in the nearby town of Stepanakert, which remains under Armenian control.
The event, organised by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, was attended by Aliyev and his family. Opening the festival, Aliyev stated that it would run each year going forward.