SPEECH BY PRESIDENT OF MONGOLIA TSAKHIAGIIN ELBEGDORJ AT THE OPENING OF THE 11TH INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS OF MONGOLISTS
I extend my heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to scholars and researchers who are participating in the grand assembly of the Mongol studies – the 11th International Congress of Mongolists.
Last July, Mongolia hosted the 11th ASEM Summit, and this month, the 11th International Congress of Mongolists is being held in Ulaanbaatar. The Olympics of Mongol studies – the 11th International Congress of Mongolists begins coinciding with the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the symbol of solidarity of the peoples of the world.
Half a century has passed since the first Congress of Mongolian language was held in Ulaanbaatar in 1959. We are proud of the outstanding scholars and Mongolists who made invaluable contributions to the development of Mongol studies – Academician B.Rinchen, Academician Ts.Damdinsuren, Academician Sh.Luvsanvandan, A.Luvsandendev, B.Shirendev, Sh.Bira, Dr. Charles Bawden of the UK, Dr. Abematsu Genichi and Prof. Shigeo Ozawa of Japan, Dr. P. Alto of Finland, Dr. Garma Sanjeev of Russia and Dr. Raghu Vira of India. Following these scholars, a new generation of Mongolists is emerging, enhancing and further advancing the Mongol studies.
/talk of B.Rinchen and Nicholas Roerich/
Mongolia is an interesting nation of rich ancient history, great tradition of statehood, and amazing historical and cultural heritage. Mongolia is an independent country and the home of all Mongols carrying language, culture and unique mentality. Therefore, we have aspiration to preserve our national uniqueness, while keeping up with the achievements and discoveries of the humanity in the globalization era.
Mongolian traditional culture was created in nomadic life and our modern culture was born in sedentary lifestyle. Unique features capture people’s interest and attention. Therefore, scholars from many countries have studied and continue studying the Mongolian language and culture.
Scholars, Scientists and Researchers,
As you know, we issued decrees, initiated works and implemented numerous projects to promote the study of Mongolian language, culture, and history. In 2011, at the 10th International Congress of Mongolists, I proposed to establish the Mongol Studies Foundation. This foundation, which is chaired by the Prime Minister of Mongolia, has already been established and now is working on many areas such as supporting and financing Mongolists around the world, training scholars, and sharing information. Also, within the confines of this policy, the National Council on Mongol Studies was established and is working successfully.
In 2010, on the occasion of the centenary 100th anniversary of restoration of national freedom and independence of Mongolia, we issued a Decree #155 to promote the official use of the traditional Mongol script. The Presidential Decree includes articles that any kind of official correspondences and letters of the President, Speaker, Prime Minister and Government Members of Mongolia to their foreign counterparts should be written in traditional Mongolian script along with an official translation in the official language of the country, or in the current and official language of the U.N. Birth certificates, marriage certificates, and other certificates, diplomas, and licenses issued by all educational institutions of Mongolia should also be written in cyrillic Mongolian and traditional Mongolian script.
Another specific work that we initiated is the Mongolian Online Dictionary project. This project was implemented from December 2014 to February 2016 and everyone who is interested to study Mongolian language is now able to access the Mongolian online dictionary and make edits through online registration. The Mongolian online dictionary application is now available. By the Law of Mongolia on the Mongolian language approved by the State Great Khural /Parliament/ of Mongolia, the National Council on Language Policy was established at the President’s Office and is chaired by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sciences and Sports.
We issued a Decree establishing the formal day of birth of the Great Chinggis Khaan. Mongolians solemnly celebrate the National Pride Day proudly remembering the history and aspiring a prosperous future. I issued a Decree on protecting the Mountain Burkhan Khaldun – the king of all mountains and it was successfully registered in the UNESCO’s world heritage list. The holy Mountain Burkhan Khaldun will be revered by the people of Mongolia eternally.
In 1911, after restoring the national freedom and independence, Mongolians paid utmost attention to writing national history and inheriting it to next generations. “A Brief History of Mongolia” by A.Amar, “Medieval history of Mongolia” by L.Dendev, “Brief History of Mongolia” by B.Ishdorj, “History of Mongolia and Manchuria” by B.Buyanchuulgan, “New History of Mongolia” by N.Magsarjav, “Brief History of Mongolia” by L.Dendev, and “A Brief History of the Mongolian People’s Revolution” by Kh.Choibalsan, D.Losol, G.Demid were published with manuscripts and in cyrillic and now are available to public. These books are remarkable literary monuments and resourceful historical accounts. These books will be presented to you, the distinguished participants of the International Congress of Mongolists.
With support of the President’s Office, the Institute of History and Archeology at the Mongolian Academy of Sciences has published a documentary photo album themed “The People of Mongolia: All to the Front and All to the Victory” dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the Victory of the Great Patriotic War, and a documentary photo album “Mongolia in War of Liberation – 1945” dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the Victory of the War of Liberation. Mongolia hosted the international conference on Rock Art and the exhibition of Mongolian craftsmen.
We have accomplished a lot, yet we have many things to do. This year, in cooperation with the National University of Mongolia and the Mongolian Academy of Sciences, we are working on the projects including the study of the Ilkhanate, catalogue of “The Secret History of Mongol”, “Ancient History of Mongolia” in 5 volumes, “Online Encyclopedia of Mongolia’s History” and supporting the national heritage project on creating audio album of Mongolia’s Altai mountain praise song and “melody of Mongolia’s Tsuur musical instrument”. This proves that Mongolia’s policy on Mongol studies has been determined, persistent and continuous.
The scientific organizations in Mongolia undertake numerous projects in the field of Mongol studies. The traditional field and frame of Mongol studies are expanding. The state policy on Mongol studies should be stable. We will support the Mongol Studies Foundation, the National Council on Mongol Studies and young scholars of the National Council on Language Policy.
Mongolists should pay more attention on training their next generation. We should train young scholars with good research skill and effort. We must stay away from fractionism by scholastic lineages and schools within Mongol studies, and this ought to be especially remembered by Mongolian researchers.
We should not draw back from our achievements. We should re-open the School of Mongolian Language and Culture – one of the first faculties of the National University of Mongolia. I would like to repeat once again what I noted during the previous Parliament – the need to establish the University of Mongol Studies.
The Mongolian people value and appreciate you, the Mongolists who study Mongolia. Therefore, I would like to call on respective public organizations and individuals to give more support to Mongolists.
Doing research is not an easy work. I would like to wish success and all the best in your difficult but honorable work.
Remembering and reminding ourselves our dear mission to hold high the name of Mongolia, which dwells eternally in the trinity of time, we must aspire even higher horisons in our work. With best efforts, we can achieve all we aim at. I earnestly thank you all.
May the bright mission of scholars ever prosper, and may the Mongol studies ever expand.