"Shusha is a national treasure of the Azerbaijani people. The recent announcement of Shusha as the cultural capital of Azerbaijan shows this again," said President Ilham Aliyev at the opening of the "Kharibulbul" festival in Shusha, APA reports.
"Shusha is an ancient Azerbaijani city. Next year we will celebrate the 270th anniversary of Shusha. Panahali Khan founded Shusha in 1752, and from that time until the occupation, Azerbaijanis always lived in this city. Hard as the Armenians tried, they could not erase the Azerbaijani spirit from Shusha. Yes, the loathsome enemy destroyed our buildings, our mosques, our historical monuments. However, Shusha was able to preserve its Azerbaijani spirit. Shusha was in captivity for 28 and a half years, but it did not bend, did not break, preserved its dignity, protected its national spirit, protected the spirit of Azerbaijan," noted the head of state.