Astana celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. A number of events are being held in some parts of Europe to mark the occasion. The diplomatic bicycle ride with the symbolic distance of 20 kilometers took place in the very heart of Europe. The campaign in Vienna was supported by the students and members of the Kazakh diaspora, as well as the representatives of top international organizations such as the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the United Nations (UN) and foreign ambassadors. For one day, the top-rank diplomats changed their casual business suits to sportswear with Kazakhstan’s logo. Meanwhile, the youngest athletes drew Kazakhstan’s flags.

ALESSANDRO AZZONI, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF ITALY TO OSCE:

 - Oh, no, it was not hard. It was a great idea by my very great friend, the ambassador of Kazakhstan Kairat Sarybay. It was a great idea to pull together a group of diplomats and friends from the diplomatic community here. Unfortunately, I’ve never been there but I promised that I will go next year, because my daughter wants desperately to go to Astana and visit Astana so it’s a promise.

KAIRAT SARYBAY, KAZAKH AMBASSADOR TO AUSTRIA:

 - The bicycle ride is attended by children, adults, diplomats and ordinary citizens who came to promote the healthy lifestyle and celebrate the 20th anniversary of Astana. Astana is gaining recognition in the world, and has turned into the center of attraction. This is evident by the number of participants of the bicycle ride.

Foreign diplomats congratulated the Kazakh capital with its anniversary. Many of them visited Astana and acknowledged its growth and international recognition.

BAKYT DZHUSSUPOV, KYRGYZ AMBASSADOR TO AUSTRIA:

 - I first visited Astana in 2002. It was the very beginning of the construction process. There is no doubt that Astana is a completely different city now. It is a modern city constructed by the highest international practices. I congratulate the residents of Astana on this Holiday!

ANDREAS STADLER, DEPUTY HEAD OF AUSTRIAN MISSION TO OSCE:

 - For organizing this beautiful bike ride on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of Kazakhstan and Astana because it unites many nations here represented in Vienna in their sympathy, in their support for Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan has become a very good and constructive international partner.

The event participants also learned about the history of Astana. A documentary was demonstrated on a big screen showing Astana’s progress in 20 years. Astana is the city that became an important megacity in Central Asia where international summits are held and decisions of the global significance are made.

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