Baku working towards rapprochement with Latin America
Baku, Azerbaijan, June 23
By Elmira Tariverdiyeva – Trend:
Successfully pursuing an independent policy in its recent history, Baku chose the right course of developing bilateral relations with various countries long ago.
The strengthening relations between Azerbaijan and Costa Rica have become a striking example of a strategy of establishing mutually beneficial relations with a number of Latin American countries.
The number of high-level visits testifies to strengthening relations between Azerbaijan and Costa Rica.
Costa Rica’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship Manuel Gonzalez Sanz’s official visit to Azerbaijan on October 20, 2015 was an important milestone in strengthening bilateral relations.
A number of documents on strengthening cooperation were signed during Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov’s visit to the capital of Costa Rica - San Jose in June 2017.
During the visit, the ministers organized an extended meeting and held political consultations in accordance with the memorandum of understanding on the establishment of a mechanism of political consultations between the Azerbaijani foreign ministry and the ministry of foreign affairs and worship of Costa Rica signed in New York on September 16, 2002.
Less than a month has passed since Manuel Gonzalez Sanz paid an official visit to Azerbaijan again.
The two countries do have many common areas of cooperation. It is especially important that Azerbaijan continues to intensify relations with Costa Rica in the international arena within the interaction with each other on the sidelines of various international organizations.
During the meeting in San Jose in June, the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Costa Rica discussed the meetings on the sidelines of big international events and appreciated the cooperation and consistent practice of mutual support within the international organizations.
Moreover, the potential of trade turnover between the two countries is not fully used and today both sides can make efforts to bring the trade turnover to the required level.
Over 20 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between Costa Rica and Azerbaijan, the two countries have systematically developed relations and a political dialogue, which facilitated the intensification of mutual visits, playing a huge role in strengthening the friendly relations and cooperation between Costa Rica and Azerbaijan.
The most important point for strengthening the relations between the two countries is Costa Rica’s decision of establishing an embassy in Baku, which must give an additional impetus to the strengthening of mutual cooperation and contribute to an increase in the tourist flow from Azerbaijan to the Latin America.
During Mammadyarov’s visit to Latin America in June, the ministers of the two countries also signed an agreement on issuing visas to those having diplomatic, official passports and also agreed to continue to make efforts to further strengthen the legal framework between the two countries, especially in the economic and humanitarian spheres.
A very important point in the bilateral agenda is a sensitive issue of influence of the Armenian diaspora in Latin America, which has been recently weakening due to Baku’s diplomatic efforts.
Mammadyarov’s recent visit to Colombia and Costa Rica and the statements made there confirmed the thesis that the Armenian lobbyists are losing again.
The joint statement of the two ministers, signed in Costa Rica in June, contains a very clear position on Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh region occupied by Armenia.
In particular, the support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of countries and the importance of fulfilling UN resolutions on the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan have been stressed in the statement.
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 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.
Elmira Tariverdiyeva is the head of Trend Agency’s Russian news service, follow her on Twitter: @EmmaTariver