Baku, Azerbaijan, May 7
By Ilkin Izzet - Trend:
First Deputy Defense Minister of Azerbaijan, Chief of General Staff of Azerbaijani Armed Forces, Colonel-General Nejmeddin Sadigov received the Chief of General Staff of Croatian Armed Forces, General Drago Lovric on May 7, a statement from the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry stated.
Lovric is on an official visit to Azerbaijan.
Before the meeting, a Croatian delegation led by Lovric visited the graves of National Leader Heydar Aliyev and prominent scientist-ophthalmologist, academician Zarifa Aliyeva in the Alley of Honor and laid wreaths and flowers.
The delegation also visited the Alley of Martyrs.
Afterwards, a welcoming ceremony was held for the Chief of General Staff of the Croatian Armed Forces at the Defense Ministry. The guest reviewed the honor guard and national anthems of both countries were played.
Sadigov and Lovric held a first meeting in an expanded format.
Colonel-General Sadigov briefed the guests about the history and the causes of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Armenia's military aggression against Azerbaijan, occupation of Azerbaijani territories and the fate of more than one million Azerbaijanis who have become refugees and IDPs.
He expressed confidence that the occupied territories of Azerbaijan will be liberated.
During the meeting, the parties discussed the military and technical cooperation between the two countries, as well as the issues related to regional security.
They also touched upon the field training of the infantry battalion of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces under the NATO Operational Capabilities Concept started in Garaheybat Training Center.
Croatian Charge d'Affairs in Azerbaijan Neda Nilishich also attended the meeting.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
The two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the U.S. are currently holding peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.
Translated by L.Z.
Edited by C.N.