Tuesday, 14 January, 2020

Afghanistan claim is ‘absurd’, Rumi is Iran’s Heritage

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan on Wednesday strongly criticized Iran and Turkey for their attempt to enlist  ‘Masnavi Manavi’, the literary book of Persian poet Mawlana Jalal-ud-din Rumi, in UNESCO.

According to Afghanistan’s news channel Tolo news, Afghan officials have said they are taking the matter up with UNESCO.

Meanwhile, Aghan writers have blasted Iran and Turkey for announcing Rumi’s Masnavi Ma’navi as a common heritage of the two nations.

The criticism comes after an agreement between Iran and Turkey to jointly inscribe the literary work of Mawlana on ​​the UNESCO’s memory of the world register.

The Iranian officials have said that although Rumi was buried in Konya city in Turkey he wrote his poems in Persian, and therefore Iran and Turkey are keeping the rights to share Rumi as a common heritage.

“Rumi belongs to present day Afghanistan and yesterday’s Khorasan. It is the responsibility of the Afghan government to take swift action about it to protect our heritage,” Afghan Poet Haidar Wojudi told Tolo news.

“We were informed about the topic through the Afghan embassy in Tehran, the ministry of foreign affairs consulted the Afghan embassy in Paris and asked them to discuss the topic with UNESCO,” MoFA spokesman Shekib Mustaghni has aldo said.


The historical evidence defends how Rumi was of a Persian cultural background.

Rumi was born in a Persian city Balkh and in a Persian family with a Persian heritage. So he was ethnically Persian.

He moved to today’s Turkey with his family when he was only 17-18 years old, where he lived and died in 1273 at the age of 66.

Rumi lived during Seljuk Empire which had Persian as official language.

Meanwhile, Rumi’s works were all in Persian and as he himself said his works were a continuation of some older Persian poets and mystics works like Attar and Sanai.

All the conversations of Rumi with Shams , and others that are recorded and compiled by Aflaki (a hagiographer who was an early disciple one genera ration after Rumi) are in Persian.

His teacher and motivator was another persian Shams Tabrizi. His works were all about love and this concept of “loving” was a new way of thinking about the creation and humanity which Persians delivered to the Islamic thoughts.

Saying Rumi wasn’t Persian because he was born in Afghanistan or Tajikistan, and died in Turkey, is like saying Einstein wasn’t Jewish because he was born in Germany and died in America!


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  1. Afghan

    June 10, 2021 at 1:34 am

    It would be wrong to say Rumi only belongs to Iran or Afghanistan. The truth is Rumi belongs to all those who speak the persian language. That includes Afghanistan, Iran and Tajikistan.
    The problem with some people who don’t know much about history of the modern persian language is that they think persian = Modern Iran. That is far from the truth. After the arrival of Islam, persian was dead and buried in what is today known as Iran for centuries until the eastern Iranian people of Afghanistan, Tajikistan, southern Uzbekistan and North western Iran (Khorasan) adopted and revived the modern persian language. Many of the of the earliest poets of modern persian were from outside the boundries of the modern nation of Iran. Sanai whom Rumi regards as his inspiration was from Ghazni (Eastern Afghanistan), Rudaki (the first persian poet of modern farsi) was from Tajkistan etc. No amount of historical revisionism will change these facts.

    • J joe

      November 4, 2021 at 11:41 pm

      You are wronge!rumi is an iranian poet.just take a look at iran’s kingdom and territory on that time that rumi lived.the kharezmian empire.


      Of course on that time the most of today’s afghanistan was a part of iran
      Indeed on that time there wasnt a country called afghanistan!
      No disparagement but you should accept it as a historical fact that todays afghanistan once was irans territory so if you were living on that time what would you say about it? Rumi was afghan?(as i mentioned on that time there was no afghanistan as it is today)

      Lets just not change history because of prejudice.
      If a region or a land is occupied by another country or is lost in a war or any other events,should its people forget their nationality!?
      Is it rumi’s fault that the eastern part of iran is lost and where he was born is now belonge to a country called afghanistan?

      This is a fact and rumi belong to iran

      AGAIN try not to falsify the histrory

  2. Forough Hakimzada

    June 10, 2021 at 4:00 am

    The above comment is exceedingly stupid! To say that Rumi was born in Balkh in what is present day Afghanistan, in no way detracts from his Persian heritage. There are millions of Persians who have called what was Khorasan and what is Afghanistan today, their home for Centuries. What is in fact absurd is for the modern Islamic Republic of Iran to claim to be the sole heir and inheritor of the five thousand year old heritage of the Persian people.

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