The capital of BiH and Azerbaijan became brotherly cities back in 1972 as parts of two today nonexistent states – Yugoslavia and the USSR.
Not even pedantic socialist arbitrators of that time could see all the similarities between the two cities, two cultures, and countries. After the collapse of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union, Sarajevo and Baku found themselves exposed to great historical changes, as well as their countries BiH and Azerbaijan, which went through the same cruel aggression of their neighboring countries. One of them, unfortunately, ended in Srebrenica genocide, and the second one in terrible genocide in town Khojaly in Azerbaijan.
Almost half a century later, besides the rich and very similar cultural heritage – medieval and Ottoman and despite everything that happened to them in the last century, these cities continue to nurture tolerance, coexistence and religious diversity, which is witnessed by a large number of religious objects. A number of tourists that are visiting Sarajevo and Baku is constantly growing.
Stecak tombstones represent medieval heritage in both BiH and Azerbaijan. The similarity of stecak tombstones in these two countries is just marvelous, as if they were made by people from the same nation. Even more extraordinary are the same messages on stecak tombstones found in BiH and Azerbaijan, as if they were part of the same poetics and the same hand. There is visible same kind of relationship towards impermanence. The same sadness. A similar way of expressing truths of life.
Strong bilateral cooperation in fields of economy and culture testifies the current relationship between the two cities and countries almost half a century later. One of the most beautiful city parks in the capital of BiH, Sarajevo, was named after the city of Baku and the central sculpture is there to remind of horrors of crimes that were committed in Khojaly, as well as crimes that were committed in other places.
Sarajevo and Baku are brother cities, as well as cities whose culture and heritage represent a valuable bridge between Europe and Asia with all of their common characteristics.