@ElinSuleymanov: Formula One + The Christian Broadcasting Network sent a reporter to Baku; he learned Azerbaijan is ecumenical, open, tolerant. Every faith is welcome, everyone can easily practice his faith. Muslims, Christians, Jews pray together.

Nov 30, 06:18 AM

Photo: Formula 1. Grand prix of Europe. Baku 2016.

Permissions: azermarka.az. This work is not an object of copyright according to the law of Azerbaijan Republic No.: 115-1Q of 5 June 1996 on Copyright and Neighbouring right; this image is in the public domain worldwide. Wikimedia Commons.

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Elin Suleymanov, Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Washington, recounts the excitement of Formula One racing in Baku and Abu Dhabi. The best drivers in the Solar System in fabulous-looking cars. The Abu Dhabi organizers did and excellent job; the track was terrific; there was one crash, an accident; thank God, the driver was fine. Our track in Baku, one of the most widely-viewed in the world, according to the UK Independent, goes through and around our downtown; it's called the Baku City Circuit. Quite a new experience for Azerbaijan, very exciting. It highlighted the touristic potential of Azerbaijan, and showed that Baku can quite successfully entertain a major international event.

Lewis Hamilton won – again. He’s a great driver, on two different tracks. Great that he could maintain his lead in both. Oops – Mercedes beat Ferrari.

The contested election in the Republic of Georgia: Salome Zurabishvili. We have very strong relations with Georgia, a strategic partnership that we value. There’s a significant Azerbaijani population living there. The US has the same views of Georgia. The Christian Broadcasting Network sent a reporter, the Rev Johnnie Moore*, to Baku to interview Amb Suleymanov, and he learned that Azerbaijan sis ecumenical, open, tolerant. Every faith is welcome, every person can easily practice his faith. Muslims, Christians. Jews pray together. The Muslim word is diverse, moving forward.  

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  *Why Rev. Johnnie Moore Is Praising This Muslim-Majority Nation as a 'Model' for Other Countries / http://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/2018/november/why-rev-johnnie-moore-is-praising-this-muslim-majority-nation-as-a-model-for-other-countries  

 Rev. Johnnie Moore, founder of the interdenominational Congress of Christian Leaders, is singing the praises of Azerbaijan after wrapping up a multi-day visit to the Islamic nation. Moore says he was encouraged by how people of various faiths and backgrounds seemed to peacefully co-exist in the country, which boasts a more than 90 percent Muslim population. "I met Sunni and Shia young people who pray together, orthodox and evangelical Christians who serve together," he wrote in a statement. "And I observed the valued and indispensable role a thriving Jewish community plays in a country whose population is over 90 percent Muslim but whose people have celebrated a longstanding relationship between their nation and the State of Israel."

Moore was joined by Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Both men are frequent collaborators on interfaith initiatives worldwide and Moore said he was impressed by the multiculturalism he witnessed during their visit.

"No doubt, Azerbaijan has its imperfections as well," Moore acknowledged. "But I came to specifically assess firsthand the spirit of multiculturalism that undergirds Azeri society, which should be celebrated and which can be a model for many countries in the world."

He indicated this was particularly poignant given Azerbaijan's history as a former Soviet republic.

"It was profound to sit these last few days with Muslim, Jewish and Christian citizens who haven't forgotten the mutual suffering they endured together as devoutly religious under the atheistic, Soviet era," Moore said. "They cherish what they have now knowing what little they had, then.”

He noted that Azerbaijan lies in stark contrast to nations like Iraq and Afghanistan, where religion is wielded like a weapon against the people by terror groups like the Islamic State. It's a brutal phenomenon he hopes t...