Sister Cities

Sister Cities is an international program started by President Dwight Eisenhower to foster people-to-people citizen diplomacy. Sister Cities promotes peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation—one individual, one community at a time. The International organization focuses on creating and strengthening partnerships between communities around four key themes: sustainable and economic development, arts and culture, youth and education, and humanitarian assistance.

The City of Minneapolis recognizes “sister city” friendships with twelve cities abroad. These relationships are supported and implemented by citizen groups here in Minneapolis whose members organize the exchanges and other activities. They have also been accredited by Sister Cities International in Washington D.C.

Minneapolis Sister Cities include:

Cuernavaca, Mexico
Location: Central Mexico, south of Mexico City
Date of Agreement: 2008
Sponsor Organization: Minneapolis Cuernavaca Friendship Committee

Eldoret, Kenya
Location: Highlands north of Nairobi
Date of Agreement: 2000
Sponsor organization: International Leadership Institute, Eldoret Forum

Harbin, China
Location: Northern China
Date of Agreement: 1992
Sponsor Organization: US-China People’s Friendship Association of Minnesota, Minneapolis Harbin Sister City Committee

Ibaraki City, Japan
Location: Northern Osaka Prefecture
Date of Agreement: 1980
Sponsor Organization: Minneapolis Ibaraki Sister City Association

Kuopio, Finland
Location: East-central Finland lake district
Date of Agreement: 1972
Sponsor Organization: Minneapolis Kuopio Sister City Committee

Santiago, Chile
Location: Central Chile
Date of Agreement: 1961

Tours, France
Location: West-central France
Date of Agreement: 1991
Sponsor Organization: Minneapolis Tours Sister City Association

Uppsala, Sweden
Location: Eastern Sweden just north of Stockholm
Date of Agreement: 2000
Sponsor Organization: The American Swedish Institute,
Minneapolis Uppsala Friendship Committee

Najaf, Iraq
Location: South Central Iraq on the Tigris River
Date of Agreement: 2009

Winnipeg, Canada
Location: Southern Manitoba
Date of Agreement: 1973

Novosibirsk, Russia (joint with City of St. Paul)
Location: Central Siberia
Date of Agreement: 1989

Bosaso, Somalia
Location: Northeastern Somalia on the Gulf of Aden
Date of Agreement: 2014

For more information on Minneapolis Sister Cities activities or volunteering with local committees please contact Bill Deef, Vice President of International Relations at 612.767.8110 or e-mail:


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