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The Uyghur PEN president Kaiser Ozhun’s presentation for the opening ceremony of The 3rd Uralic-Altay PEN solidarity network Conference

Ural-Altay PEN Solidarity Network | 20 June 2011

Ulaanbaatar/Höshöö Tsaidam, Mongolia 02-08 July 2011

The 3rd Uralic-Altay PEN solidarity network Conference On Literary Translation and linguistic issue in the region

(Past, present and future)

Organizers: Uyghur Pen & Mongolian Academy of Culture and Poetry

Working languages: Uyghur, Mongolian, English Coordinating Organizations: International PEN office-London, Ural-Altay PEN solidarity network Center’s

Distinguish guests! Dear friends and colleagues. Welcome to the 3rd congress of the Ural-Altai PEN solidarity network. The land of ancient civilizations, land of starting point! The poetic nature and epical people welcome you to the Mongolia.

Some of you were at the first conference 2009 in Istanbul and second congress in issyk-kol. I am so happy to see you all again.

Let me start by thanking you all for being here. Bringing everyone in this room together was not easy. Thank you for your patience and thank you for not giving up. Thanks took time out of their schedules to come here. Some of you have come from very far away to contribute to this conference.

Above all, I want to express my deepest gratitude to our friends at Mongolian academy of poetry and culture. Without them, obviously none of this would have happened. They have handled everything beautifully, no matter what the obstacles. They have been determined and dedicated to bringing you all here. Thank you Mr.Mend –Oyoo, Ms.Munknakara Oyoo for contributing to the Ural-Altaic PEN solidarity Network with your heart and hard work.

We are lucky, too, to have with us our dear friends, the International Secretary of International PEN, Hori Takeaki san, international board member Mr. Gel won Lee. By being here you recognize what the Ural-Altaic solidarity Network is about. You recognize and support what we are trying to do. You show solidarity and faith in our new regional network.

I would like to just say a few words about the purpose of our Ural-Altaic network. Our conference over the next few days is about translation and linguistics issue. But our network is about so much more.

It is about understanding each other. It is about supporting each other. It is about standing together for freedom of speech. This is what PEN means.

We all believe that progress in society, in culture, in economy, in academia, in human rights, or in any other area, comes through open communication and debate.

We can take Translation and Linguistics issue of the region is main discussion in this Congress. We also set up TLRC (Translation and Linguistic rights committee) of Ural-Altay PEN solidarity network, wish to start meaning full programs… The Ural-Altaic PEN Network is about supporting debate and discussion on many subjects in Europe and Asia. That is freedom of expression and this a key to progress and to a fair world.

The Ural-Altaic PEN Network is also a chance for us to promote civil society in all of our countries. We recognize that the right to “freedom of association” is as important as the right to freedom of speech. Civil society can be a positive force, like PEN, to push for human rights.

This is why we will use this opportunity to talk more about International PEN. PEN is a way for us to share what we know about the problems we face in our countries and to look for solutions together. Through PEN, writers from all over the world can help each other by coordinating their efforts.

During the conference, we will be arranging session to present PEN’s work for Translation and Linguistic rights committee. We welcome everyone to come learn more about how PEN works writers for TLR and how you can help. We will discuss what work we can do for TLR in Ural-Altaic countries, and how we can use PEN to make our voices louder. We hope that it will give you some ideas for your own work in your own countries.

Let me conclude by repeating again our thanks to everyone here today and to Mongolian Academy of culture and poetry especially. We hope that when you all leave this conference, you will take with you new thoughts about the Ural-Altaic languages, a better understanding of each other’s cultures and countries, and ideas for how to keep working toward a stronger network. We hope you will take home some inspiration and ideas for your own PEN center. And we hope you will feel empowered to work for TLR around the world.

Kaiser Abdurusul ÖzHun

President of Uyghur PEN

Ulaanbatar, Mongolia

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