Novi Sad, Serbia
Especially since the organisation of the International Culture Days in Dortmund in 1978 with the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the City of Dortmund maintains close contacts with today's Serbia.
Coat of arms of Novi Sad.
Already during the previous International Culture Days, the Yugoslavian side declared their interest in initiating friendly relations between Dortmund and a city in former Yugoslavia.
In January 9, 1980, the Lord Mayor of the City of Novi Sad, Jovan Dejanovic, indicated to Günther Samtlebe, the Lord Mayor of Dortmund, that the Consulate of the SFR Yuglosavia considered Novi Sad to be a good candidate for a twinning relationship with Dortmund. Dortmund's Council of the Elders received this as a positive and promising signal.
Novi Sad is composed of the districts of Novi Sad and Petrovaradin, at the foot of the same named fortress.
Picture: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic flickr / anjči
In January, 1981, the Foreign Office requested the City of Dortmund's participation in the German Culture Days in Ljubljana/Yugoslavia. Following these culture days, the same contributions (exhibitions, etc.) were to be presented in Novi Sad.
On March 26, 1981, Dortmund's Council confirmed its wish to nurture and deepen the relationship to Novi Sad, with the aim of building a true friendship between both cities.
The main street of Novi Sad.
Picture: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic Wikimedia Commons / anjči
Following Dortmund's invitation, an official delegation from Novi Sad visited in Dortmund from October 4 -8, 1982. On October 5, 1982, the charter of friendship is presented to the City of Novi Sad, in which it states:
"In the firm hope that the twinning relations soon to be initiated will lead to a lively exchange of opinions and views through the direct encounter of the citizens."
On April 26, 1983, the respresentatives of Novi Sad also decide to enter into a formal friendship with the City of Dortmund:
"The workers and citizens of Novi Sad, the capital of the Socialist Autonomous Region of Vojvodina, will make a serious effort, together with the citizens of Dortmund, to familiarise themselves with the beauty, freedom and spirit of each other's cities, in order to overcome geographical distances and to nurture and maintain humanitarian feelings and take responsability for the beauty of life and the freedom of all people."
Many encounters and exchanges followed in the coming years.