International Conference in Prospect of Iran-Russia Relations held at ATU
Report by the Directorate for International Academic Cooperation–
Thanks to the efforts made by the Directorate for International Academic Cooperation at Allameh Tabataba'i University (ATU), the opening ceremony of the International Conference on the "Prospect of Academic Cooperation between Iran and Russia" was held on 27 February 2023 at the amphitheatre hall of the Faculty of Management and Accounting, ATU.
Speakers of the event included Dr Abdollah Motamedi, ATU President; Mr Kazem Jalali, Iranian Ambassador to Russia; Alexi Dedov, Russian Ambassador to Tehran; Pavel Shevtsov, Deputy Director of Russian Organisation for Scientific Cooperation; Dr Mahmoudreza Aghamiri, President of Shahid Beheshti University and Head of the National Committee on Iran-Russia Academic Cooperation; Dr Ali Bagher Taherinia, President of the Institute for Research and Planning in Higher Education; and Dr Reza Maleki, Advisor to President of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organisation (ICRO) and Head of the Centre for Strategic Studies in Cultural Relations, ICRO. The event was also attended by a group of directors, professors and students from ATU and other Iranian and Russian Universities.
At the outset of the event, Professor Motamedi welcomed the audiance, congratulated the Shaban holidays and said, "The activities and partnerships initiated between Iranian universities, including ATU, and Russian universities provide a very bright prospect".
Referring to the university's title, Dr Motamedi added: "Allameh Tabataba'i was an Islamic scholar, mystic, philosopher, and great interpreter of the Qur'an, and had a world-renowned personality. He had precious scientific publications, including the interpretation of the Holy Qur'an published in 20 volumes in Arabic and translated into various languages around the world."
ATU President then provided a brief introduction to ATU and said: "Currently, the university has about 100,000 graduates at different levels, 11 Faculties, and 10 Research Centres and Institutes. It has nearly 550 full-time faculty members and 14,000 students, of which 65% are Master's and PhD students and 35% study at undergraduate level."
Dr Motamedi added that, since its establishment, ATU has played a pivotal role in the development of scientific and executive affairs in Iran: "During recent decades, ATU professors have had major executive responsibilities in sensitive positions nationally and internationally, creating the grounds for promoting their knowledge in various cultural, economic, political, and social areas. Today, ATU's professors and graduates provide great services to the community."
ATU President then pointed to the special position reserved for science and scientists in religions and said: "It is believed in Islamic culture that the scholars in a society are prophets' heirs. The science is assuming a similar place in the Iranian and Islamic cultures. One of the most elevated positions in our religious culture is the position of Shahids (martyrs). Shahids sacrifice themselves for religious and national ideals. However, it is sometimes claimed by great people that [the ink in] a scientist's pen is more precious than a Shahid's blood. This shows the position of science and scientists in the Islamic culture, and that is why Muslims have always played the role of civilization-builders throughout history."
Pointing to one of the cruelties the West has committed to humanity in the scientific sphere, Dr Motamedi maintained that, "When it comes to the history of different sciences, it is claimed that science began in ancient Greece, everything shut down in the Middle Ages, and there was a scientific flourishing from the Renaissance onwards. This is while in the very Middle Ages, where science was shut down throughout the West, Islamic believers and scholars in the Eastside of the world had theories and views in various areas of sciance and promoted those corners of science less addressed in the world."
ATU President concluded his speech, hoping that the event provides the ground for appropriate scientific dialogues and joint activities between scholars and create bright prospects for international academic cooperation between the universities at the two countries.