Under the coordination of the Union of Turkish World Municipalities (TDBB), TDBB Administrative Board members, Turkey’s Balıkesir Metropolitan Municipality and Uzbekistan’s Kokand Municipality signed the Sister City protocol at a ceremony held in Balıkesir on September 4, 2023.

The ceremony was attended by Mayor of Balıkesir Metropolitan Municipality Yücel Yılmaz, Mayor of Kokand Maruf Usmanov, TDBB Secretary General Fahri Solak, in addition to Chairman of the Yükseliş National Movement Bobur Bekmurodov, Mayor of Navai Dilmurod Ergashev, Mayor of Termez Uktam Turaev, Mayor of Kattakurgan Gavhar Alimova, Mayor of Davlatabad Anvar Tajimirzaev, Uzbekistan Presidential Administration Advisor Shahuz Hakimov, Uzbekistan Court of Accounts Head Anvarjon Soliev, Yükseliş National Movement Vice President Askar Mamathanov and Coordinator Barnohon Niyazımbetova from the Uzbekistan delegation and other guests.

Mayor of Balıkesir Metropolitan Municipality Yücel Yılmaz, in his speech at the ceremony, said that they will share information and experience within the scope of the protocol. Yılmaz stated that they plan to cooperate in many areas with Kokand, their first sister city in Uzbekistan and added, “At the same time, we are signing a protocol to become a real sister city in education, economy, health, youth and sports, and the protection of cultural heritage, sharing environment, energy, infrastructure, superstructure and information technologies.”

Mayor of Kokand Maruf Usmanov emphasized that today is a historic day for both cities and said: “The cooperation of the Presidents of the two states is reflected here today, further strengthening our relations. I would like to state that with our Sisterhood Protocol, we will leave our cooperation in youth, tourism, history, culture, environment and many other issues as a legacy to the coming years. This is the first sister city protocol we have signed in Turkey to date. Kokand is one of the historical cities. Our city is one of the most important cities of Uzbekistan in terms of culture and civilization. I hope that the friendship between the two cities will be strengthened with this brotherhood project.”

Later, the two mayors presented local gifts to each other. The ceremony was completed with a group photo to commemorate the day.