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Nazir Tоrekulov
(1892-1937 years)

        The 125th anniversary of the first Kazakh diplomat, prominent political and public figure, linguist and diplomat, the first Ambassador of the Soviet Union in Saudi Arabia – Nazir Tоrekulov.

The first Soviet-Kazakh Ambassador  Nazir  Tоrekulovich Tоrekulov  was born in 1892 in Turkestan, according to some sources in Kokand in a family of large cotton trader. In 1904 he graduated from Nazir Mekteb, 1906 – Russian school for the population of national suburbs, and in 1914 – 8 commercial school in Kokand. In 1914-1916 years, during the World War I, he was able to complete three courses in the Faculty of Economics of the Moscow Commercial Institute. As a student, he took part in actions in discontent, which started in 1916 issued a decree on sending Kazakhs to dig trenches in the war. He was sent to the Western Front. Near Minsk has created an underground organization “Erkin field” (“Free Steppe”), composed of representatives of the peoples of Kazakhstan and Central Asia, designed at war. The purpose of this organization was to assist the peoples of the East in their struggle for national liberation.

In 1917 Tоrekulov became interested in politics, first joined the Left Socialist-Revolutionaries, and in October 1918 became a member of the RCP (B). He served in the Red Army.

In 1918-1919 years in Kokand, he was the secretary of the district executive committee, Commissioner of Education, head of the department of education.

Since 1920  N.Tоrekulov held several government positions in Tashkent: editor of “Ishtrati June”, organ of the regional bureau of the Muslim, in 1920-1921 – People’s Commissar of Education of Turkestan,  in  September – November 1921 – Executive Secretary of the CC CP (b)  of  Turkestan, a member of the Central Asian Bureau of the CPSU (b); November 1921 – March 1922 – Chairman of the Central Election Commission  of  Turkestan,  as chairman he had decided to postpone the day off from Sunday to Friday. Days of rest also were announced three days, in which devout Muslims celebrate Kurban Ait.

Name  N. Tоrekulov with particular respect can be attributed to the figures of Alash, which immeasurably done a lot for the people at the beginning of the last century. It is with all my heart felt as disasters bring the peoples of Turkestan colonization of Russia. These thoughts he openly expressed in articles and reports published in the publications issued in Tashkent, Moscow. And the tsarist government and the Bolsheviks recognized Turkestan only as a raw material appendage of Russia and had no interest in his cultural formation, on the contrary, retarded growth and development of the region. He was the first, passionate, exposing all the obstacles placed in the way of progressive changes in Turkestan. In the political life of the multinational Turkestan Republic N. Tоrekulov occupied one of the main places. Among the first representatives of local nationalities N. Tоrekulov was elected first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of  Turkestan, headed by the CEC of the Turkestan Republic, the People’s Commissariat of Education. T. Ryskulov, S. Kozhanov, Tynyshpaev M., H. Dosmukhamedov understand all the complexities of state-building in the country with low literacy and attached great importance to the education of the people, opened in Tashkent first Kazakh higher education institution. At the root of this case was N. Torekulov. While in high positions, he took a lot of decisions, not only political, but also cultural issues. The acquisition of human values ​​and respect for him, he combined the traditions of his people.

In the years 1922-1926  N. Tоrekulov worked in Moscow, headed by the Central Publishing House of the USSR peoples engaged in scientific and pedagogical work. He has lectured at the Communist University of Toilers of the East, some time was vice-rector of the institution.

Then his diplomatic career starts. Fighting with his appointment as the representative of the USSR at the end of 1927 was serious, since considered other candidates to be sent to the diplomatic service in the Kingdom of Hejaz, Nejd and the attached area (formerly known as Saudi Arabia).

After Tоrekulov had already managed to clearly express himself, having worked in various key positions, as director of the Central Peoples of the USSR in Moscow publishing house, he was enrolled in the reserve of the CPSU (b) and the People’s Commissariat of Foreign Affairs of the USSR. In short, it was a highly educated man, because Commissariat and insisted on considering it the only worthy candidate, able to represent the Soviet Union in the East Region.

People’s Commissariat of Foreign Affairs of the USSR insisted on the candidacy N.Torekulova, had to address an official letter to Stalin himself. He supported the request of the People’s Commissariat, which determined the final choice. So, at a Politburo meeting of 24 November 1927 (Minutes № 137), it was decided “to appoint ambassador to Gedzhas tons. Torekulova”, more precisely, the Kingdom of Hejaz, Nejd and the attached area, succeeding K.A.Hakimova, worked in Jeddah since 1924

In order to more effectively carry out their duties, the Soviet Ambassador N. Tоrekulov, who had already fluent in seven languages ​​- Kazakh, Russian, Uzbek, Tatar, Turkish, German and French – learned in a short time, and Arabic, later completely abandoning interpreters . In this regard, I recall his words: “And the one talking, the other is converted, salt is lost.” Moreover, his language skills allowed him not only to speak to local audiences, but even argue on theological topics. All this along with high professionalism and personal charm Soviet diplomat earned him sincere respect from the king and his family. King Abdul Aziz Al Saud called Nazir Torekulova brother. Good relations have been established at the envoy and the sons of the king, especially with Prince Faisal.

Thus, Nazir Tоrekulov worked with the first days of the state, now referred to as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Since 1927, this country was called the Kingdom of Hejaz, Nejd and the attached area, with 1932 – Saudi Arabia. It was a time when the state began to develop links and relations with other countries. And N.Tоrekulov was directly involved in these events.

In 1932 the Saudi delegation headed by Prince Faisal paid a ten-day visit to the Soviet Union. This visit can be considered one of the main political achievements of the post Nazir Torekulova  envoy. Both parties reacted to the visit very seriously. Moscow knew that it would take not just the son of the Saudi monarch, a seventeen year old boy and heir, the future King of the friendly state. Saudi same side hoped to achieve with the Government of the USSR of arrangements for Soviet trade credits for a million pounds, and for a period of 10 years. As an envoy Tоrekulov worked for eight years.

In Mecca, the shrines of Islam attracts pilgrims from all over the world, performing a multi-day or even a month’s path through Afghanistan, Iran has managed to get the pilgrims and the USSR, namely, Kazakhstan, Bashkortostan, Tatarstan, from the republics of the North Caucasus and Central Asia.

But it was the most educated people of that time, which in the most severe weather, and most importantly – political conditions for seven years been building diplomatic relations with the Arabs. Among his biggest victories – PBX construction, oil exports to Saudi Arabia, Prince Faisal’s visit to the Soviet Union.

Torekulov represented the country with the communist ideology. It is the respect with which tact, sometimes diplomatic tricks he solved complex issues in favor of his country – the country of atheism. And at the same time boldly raised the question before his government on the provision of appropriate assistance in the transportation of pilgrims to Mecca from the Union and vice versa.

This contributed to his knowledge, excellent knowledge of the language and the Eastern mentality, ability to find compromises between the interests of several parties, as well as establishing relationships of trust with the local political establishment and merchants. One day, the day of the national holiday of the Republic of Turkey, the envoy spoke in Arabic on behalf of the diplomatic corps. After that, Torekulovym were considered and foreign colleagues. On one of the coronation, he again delivered a speech in Arabic as the “elders” on behalf of the diplomatic corps. Since then, representatives of the diplomatic corps themselves at the time of any contentious issues in the diplomatic community began to turn to the Soviet Ambassador, thus unwittingly acknowledging its doyen. But the main thing – to it has increased the confidence of the Saudi monarch. With the king, his family Torekulova have developed a very close relationship.

In 1933, like its predecessor dipagenta and Consul General, N.Tоrekulov hajj. Here is how it says Ayaz İshaki, a prominent Muslim Tatar national movement, who was in exile: “On the streets of Mecca with the endless sound of the horn car appeared, decorated with red flags with the hammer and sickle. There were two. … The one that was younger, was none other than as Nazir Torekulovym, representatives of the Council in the Hijaz, a member of the Comintern. … Immediately it became known that the Soviet representative came for pilgrimage. And in fact, Mr. Tоrekulov, like other Muslims performed Hajj rituals. Attend at all solemn prayer and performing all the rituals, Mr. Tоrеkulov went to Madinah to visit the Prophet’s tomb.

At the same time representatives of the Council touted considerable sums of money to the religious needs of  Muslims. “At a meeting of the Politburo on 31 August 1935 (Minutes № 32) it was decided to “accept the offer of the People’s Commissariat of revocation and appointment  Turekulov  N. Khakimov.” Since 1936 Tоrekulov worked at the Institute of Oriental in Leningrad and the Institute of Language and Literature of the peoples of the East in Moscow. Nazir Tоrekulov proved himself as a great scholar. He is the author of “Social-Political Dictionary Russian-Uzbek language” (Tashkent, 1922). He studied the problem of  Latinization of  Turkic  writing, was the author of the project Latinization of Turkic alphabet, dedicating this issue a number of articles in magazines “Life nationalities”, “New East” (On the Question of Latinization of Turkic alphabets  // New East. 1925, number 10/11, with . 218-222;  // New challenges New East 1928, № 20/21, to XII-XXII), and others…

July 17, 1937 Tоrekulov Nazir was arrested by the NKVD. November 3 the same year on charges of pan-Turkic propaganda and inciting terror Soviet statesmen Tоrekulov Nasir was sentenced by the Military Collegium of the Supreme Court of the USSR in the shooting. On the same day the sentence was carried out.

January 28, 1958 Nazir Tоrekulovich  Torekulov was rehabilitated. In Kazakhstan, a light commemorating N. Turekulov. In 2003, the Decree of the Government of Kazakhstan has ucherezhdena medal “Nazir Tоrekulov” for his contribution to foreign policy.