Baku, Azerbaijan, March 11
By Anakhanum Khidayatova - Trend:
Azerbaijan and Pakistan will sign a joint statement on strategic partnership during the visit of Pakistani President Mamnoon Hussain to the country, said the message posted on the official website of Pakistani president on Mar.11.
During the visit on Mar.11-14, Hussain will hold meetings with some high-ranking officials of Azerbaijan. High-ranking officials from both countries will also participate in the joint business forum and discuss ways to expand bilateral cooperation in diverse sectors, particularly in trade and economy, according to the message. During the visit, Pakistan's president will be accompanied by Federal Minister for Defence Production Rana Tanvir Hussain, senior officers of different ministries and around forty Pakistani industrialists and traders.
The political relations between the two countries are at the high level. Both countries have always supported each other on the international arena. Pakistan supports Azerbaijan's position in the issue of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and condemns Armenia's aggressive policy. Pakistan was the first country to adopt the resolution that strongly condemns the genocide committed by Armenian armed units against the civilians in Khojaly city and urges the international community to push Armenia to fulfill the resolutions of the UN Security Council.
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. On February 25-26, 1992, the Armenian armed forces, together with the 366th infantry regiment of Soviet troops stationed in Khankendi committed an act of genocide against the population of the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly. As a result of the massacre, some 613 people were killed, including 63 children, 106 women and 70 old people. Eight families were totally exterminated, 130 children lost one parent and 25 children lost both. A total of 487 civilians became disabled as a result of the onslaught. Some 1,275 innocent residents were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 people remains unknown. The two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the US are currently holding peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented the UN Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions. Pakistani Senate recognized the Khojaly genocide on Feb.1, 2012.
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