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US must strengthen ties to Azerbaijan – The Hill

Politics Materials 14 March 2015 15:05 (UTC +04:00)
The US must strengthen ties to Azerbaijan, since it is in the interest of the two countries to work together.
US must strengthen ties to Azerbaijan – The Hill

Baku, Azerbaijan, March 14
By Elena Kosolapova - Trend:

The US must strengthen ties to Azerbaijan, since it is in the interest of the two countries to work together, said the article of Ronnie Shows, the employee of lobbying firm AUX Initiatives, published in the US The Hill newspaper.

The most important foreign policy question facing the United States today is if it can go after the terrorist groups, who pose a real threat to the country and its allies, and at the same time, work with moderate Muslim nations to build an alliance against the radicalized forces, according to the author.

Shows added that alliances with moderate Islamic nations are critical because they deny the radicals the ability to claim that the US is at war with Islam and Azerbaijan is one moderate Muslim nation with which the country has a long-standing partnership.

The US partnership with Azerbaijan reinforces the message to the world that the United States is not at war with Islam, according to the author.

"In the last few months, there has been a lot of talk about our relationship with that nation," Shows wrote. "I believe we should be strengthening our relationship with countries that seek to be constructive US allies, Azerbaijan chief among them."

The author reminded that Azerbaijan's population is 95 percent Muslim, adding that it is also a country with a thriving Jewish population and several thousand of them live in Baku. "Azerbaijan has proven itself an ally of Israel and set up strong economic ties."

Israel gets around 40 percent of its oil from Azerbaijan and in return, Azerbaijan has received technology and armaments from Israel, according to Shows.

"[...] we must keep in mind that by working with Israel, the Azerbaijanis are helping our closest ally in the most dangerous region of the world," said the article.

The author also reminded that during the Afghanistan War, Azerbaijan was a reliable partner of the United States.

He went on to add that Azerbaijan allowed American aircraft to use its airspace and allowed troops and supplies to travel to Afghanistan through its territory.

Moreover, Azerbaijan sent troops to Afghanistan and the former Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, praised Azerbaijan's assistance in this issue, according to the author. "I hope policy makers in the United States will continue to realize that Azerbaijan is an ally and it is in our interests to work together."

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Follow the author on Twitter: @E_Kosolapova

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