We restored our territorial integrity and incurred minimal losses - Azerbaijani president
BAKU, Azerbaijan, July 14
We have restored our territorial integrity and incurred minimal losses, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said attending a ceremony to give out apartments and cars to families of martyrs and war disabled in Khojasan settlement, Trend reports.
“When planning each operation I said that losses should be minimal."
"Sometimes we postponed certain operations because of this," the president said. "We carried out some operations afterward because we saw that we could have many casualties. Of course, the capitulation act Armenia signed on 10 November allowed us the opportunity to save the lives of thousands of young people. If Armenia had not signed the act of capitulation and if the war had continued, we would not have stopped, of course."
"Because I repeatedly said during the war that we are ready to stop," the president said. "In the first days of the war, I said that the Armenian leader should give us a timetable of when they would vacate our lands. We are ready to stop the war. We do not want war. However, they only gave us a timetable when we took back Shusha and liberated more than 300 settlements."
"But if Armenia had not signed the act of capitulation on 10 November, we would not have stopped," the president said. "Our next operational directions were clear. There would have been many casualties: in Aghdam, Kalbajar and Lachin. They had turned Aghdam into such a fortification that it was very dangerous to enter it from the east."
"Of course, after the capture of Shusha, after Hadrut and Fuzuli were already in our hands, the Armenian military contingent in Aghdam would have been besieged and destroyed," the president said. "But we would have had losses too. The natural terrain, climate and weather conditions of Kalbajar and Lachin districts could make our task very difficult, especially considering that winter was on its way. Winter is very severe in those places. Snow never melts in the mountains."
"I can say that we managed to access the Azerbaijani-Armenian border in that direction only in May," the president said. "Because there is no road, there are even no paths there at all. There were no settlements in those regions during the Soviet era. We were able to get there only after the snow had melted. Therefore, the work we did during the war was carried out with full precision. Our steps were very well calculated – we did everything on time and we stopped on time. We have restored our territorial integrity and incurred minimal losses."