President Ilham Aliyev clarifies issue of Iranian trucks in interview to Anadolu agency
BAKU, Azerbaijan, September 28
This is not the first time that Iranian trucks have entered the Karabakh region. This has happened several times during the occupation. These trucks went there on a regular basis, and we are aware of that. But, of course, there was no exact information, as accurate as of the latest report. Taking this into account, we expressed our dissatisfaction to the Iranian side through various channels. But this process continued, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said in an interview to the Turkish Anadolu Agency, Trend reports.
“After the war, the Lachin corridor is already under our supervision, and the distance from our military positions to the road leading to Khankendi is probably 5-6 meters. We have sufficient technical capabilities along the Lachin corridor, including the vicinity of Shusha and other places. We have cameras and we also use our satellite and drones. We saw that trucks keep traveling there even after the war. So I instructed our Presidential Administration to speak to the Iranian Ambassador to Azerbaijan. We do not want to give this an official coloring, let them talk in a friendly way and explain that this should be stopped. This is disrespect for us, it is disrespect for the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, so this must be stopped. If I am not mistaken, this conversation took place in July. Then, of course, we began to monitor this, and by the beginning of each month, we collect information on how many trucks have entered and how many have left, what they brought in and took out. We have all the information, including their license plates, and they have been published in the media. But what happened after that? They tried to attach Armenian license plates to Iranian trucks. They committed this falsification in an attempt to deceive us. An extremely incompetent step was taken – a tank truck with a Persian sign but an Armenian license plate. I should also note that they attached the same license plates to several cars. So what does such sloppy work testify to? That they wanted to continue this business and just disguise themselves. Under such circumstances, of course, at the end of the month, we handed in a diplomatic note in an official manner. The Iranian Ambassador to Azerbaijan was invited to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where complaints were expressed to him and a request made to put an end to this. This took place in mid-August. We hoped this would be stopped. However, from 11 August to 11 September, about 60 trucks from Iran illegally entered Karabakh again. To prevent this, we already switched to a specific action. In other words, our conduct and actions are responsible and based on friendly ties. The first time, we gave a verbal warning, the second time we handed in an official note, and the third time we installed checkpoints – customs, border, police. Thus, we began to control the road leading to Armenia through the territory of Azerbaijan, after which the entry of trucks into Karabakh was stopped. But let me ask you: was it necessary to bring matters to this point?” the head of state said.