Alalamalislami: Director-General of UNESCO in Iran Sa’dollah Nasiri Qeidari said it is important for the UN agency to open a regional office in Tabriz.
Nasiri Qeidari raised the issue in a meeting with members of the Tabriz City Council on Tuesday.
He said Tabriz is an ancient city, home to various archeological sites from different centuries, adding that with its rich cultural, social and economic heritage, it could become a magnet for international travel and tourism.
City Council Director Mohammad Hossein Jafari, for his part, said Tabriz is gearing up for receiving a large number of foreign tourists in 2018, adding that investments have been made in its infrastructure to ensure the city can accommodate two million tourists a year.
The official welcomed the idea to open a regional office for UNESCO in the city and maintained that it could become a reality after many challenges.
He said the establishment of the regional office will be a turning point for UNESCO and Tabriz that would further strengthen their relationship.
Tabriz is the most populated city in Azerbaijan province, one of the historical capitals of Iran, and the present capital of East Azerbaijan province. Located in the Quru River valley between the long ridge of the volcanic cones of the Sahand and Eynali mountains, Tabriz' elevation range between 1,350 and 1,600 meters above sea level.
The valley opens up into a plain that gently slopes down to the eastern shores of Lake Urmia, 60 kilometres to the west. With cold winters and temperate summers, the city is considered a summer resort.
Tabriz is famous for its handicrafts including hand-woven rugs and jewelry. It is known for locally made confectioneries, chocolates, dried nuts, and traditional food.
Tabriz is also an academic hub and a site for some of the most prestigious academic and cultural institutes in the northwest of Iran.