President of Azerbaijan receives credentials of incoming non-resident ambassadors of ten countries to Azerbaijan (PHOTO)
BAKU, Azerbaijan, June 12
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received credentials of newly appointed non-resident ambassadors of the Republic of Guatemala, Ireland, the Republic of Albania, the Kingdom of Norway, the Republic of Montenegro, the Republic of Estonia, the Federal Republic of Somalia, New Zealand, the Republic of Slovenia and the Kingdom of Denmark.
Welcoming the ambassadors, President Ilham Aliyev said:
-Dear ambassadors, good morning, I welcome you to Azerbaijan. I am very glad to see you, I hope that your activity as ambassadors to Azerbaijan will mark the new phase of development between Azerbaijan and countries you represent. I am sure that you will find a lot of areas of cooperation-in economic area, in area of infrastructure development, cultural area of course, and political developments. With your countries Azerbaijan actively cooperates in numerous international organizations. First of all in United Nations, at the same time, OSCE, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Council of Europe, Non-Aligned Movement. So we have very active contacts in different international formats. I am sure that will also continue, because between our countries we do not have any disagreements. In general, Azerbaijan’s foreign policy is aimed at strengthening cooperation with all the countries of the world, and I think this is a reason why Azerbaijan is now chairing the 2nd after United Nations biggest international institution like Non-Aligned Movement. We have been elected as a chair of Non-Aligned Movement by unanimous decision of 120 countries. And this demonstrates the high level of international reputation of Azerbaijan, because being elected by unanimous decision of 120 countries means a lot. Assuming chairmanship, we announced that we will defend justice and international law, and we will defend the interests of member states what we are trying to do. Particularly now, with respect to the COVID pandemic Azerbaijan initiated two important international events-Summit of Non-Aligned Movement on COVID-19, and a Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly on COVID-19 which was supported by 155 countries. One of the main messages we deliver constantly is a fair distribution of vaccines to avoid vaccine nationalism, and to allow countries which do not have financial resources to get access to vaccines to be supported by donor organizations and rich countries. You start your activity in Azerbaijan in a very important time for us. İt’s a new time for the region, new time for Azerbaijan, new stage of development of Azerbaijan, and the region. As a result of our victory in Patriotic War last year which put an end to long-lasting Armenian occupation of Azerbaijani territories. Despite decisions and resolutions of international organizations, Armenia did not comply with them and kept our lands under occupation for almost 30 years, brutally violated international law, brutally violated 4 United Nations’ Security Council resolutions which demanded complete and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian troops from our territories. For 27 years these resolutions were on paper, without any progress. So, Azerbaijan implemented resolutions itself, restored its territorial integrity and put an end to this injustice. Not only Security Council of United Nations but also other international organizations like OSCE, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Council of Europe and many others supported Azerbaijan’s just position on the conflict with Armenia, and this created a very solid international foundation for settlement of this issue. So, we acted in the framework of international law, we acted based on the UN Charter which gives a right to all the countries for self-defense, and that was exactly what we have done during the 44-days war. After the war it’s a new reality in the region, a new situation, and Azerbaijan immediately started the process of reconstruction of the liberated territories. You will visit the liberated territories, you will see yourself the total devastation of our cities, villages, of our historical and religious sights. Vandalism and barbarism-these are maybe two words which can illustrate what Armenian state did on our lands during the years of occupation. We are now in front of the big challenge. We need to return internally displaced persons, we need to return hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis back. But it is not possible today, because of landmines. Hundreds of thousand landmines planted by Armenians and after war stopped for the last 7 months we had more than 100 Azerbaijanis killed or injured, because Armenia did not give us the map of landmines. Just recently, due to the active communication of international organizations, we are coming closer to getting some information about Armenian landmines. I hope to have good news soon but I don’t want to say something before we have these results. But Armenia has to give us all the landmines, all hundreds of thousands they have planted. If they do not do it that will once again demonstrate the terrorist origin of this country. After we cleaned the area, and in parallel with that we will start infrastructure rebuilding of our cities and villages. It’s a big area, more than 10 thousand square kilometers which was liberated by our army, and which was liberated as a result of November 10 last year joint Declaration of the presidents of Azerbaijan, Russia and prime minister of Armenia, which put an end to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The Declaration which was signed on November 10 last year is not just a declaration on ceasefire, as some countries want to present. It is much broader than ceasefire, because it clearly shows how the future development will continue. It provides opening of communications, it provides peace-keeping operations. It is a declaration of future cooperation in the region. Therefore it’s not a ceasefire document as some want to present it. It’s a foundation for peace agreement between Azerbaijan and Armenia. Unfortunately, our public statements that we are ready to start negotiations with Armenia on peace agreement are not answered by Armenian government. Our proposal which is supported by big international actors to start negotiation on delimitation of state border with Armenia is also ignored by Armenian government. This is what we cannot understand. If Armenia wants peace, we need to have a peace agreement. If Armenia wants war, they will get the same result as they got last fall. If Armenia wants peace they need to start negotiation with us on delimitation. If they don’t do it, they will regret. So, we are ready for a new phase of development in the Caucasus. We are ready for peace and we demonstrate it. I am sure that during your future visits to Azerbaijan we will see that our words and our statements and our signature has the same value. Once again, I would like to welcome you to our country, wish you success and hope you will visit Azerbaijan frequently. Thank you.
President Ilham Aliyev spoke with the ambassadors about bilateral relations and regional issues.