Baku hosts plenary session of NATO`s senior Civil Emergency Planning Committee

Baku hosts plenary session of NATO`s senior Civil Emergency Planning Committee
# 19 May 2010 04:15 (UTC +04:00)
Representatives of the NATO member and partner countries, NATO`s related bodies are attending the meeting. NATO`s Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Operations, Maurits Jochems expressed gratitude to Azerbaijan for “valuable” cooperation and very well organization of the meeting.
Jochems said Azerbaijan has cooperated with NATO since 1992. He praised “active” participation of the country in various programs of the organization.
Addressing the session, Minister of Emergency Situations of Azerbaijan Colonel-General Kemaleddin Heydarov said after Azerbaijan regained its independence, integration into and cooperation with Euro-Atlantic structures were among key priorities of foreign policy.
The Minister said considering the role of NATO in ensuring security and peace in Euro-Atlantic space, Azerbaijan joined the organization`s program “Partnership for Peace” in May, 1994.
Heydarov described the cooperation between Azerbaijan and NATO since then as “effective”.
The Minister said the Euro-Atlantic integration process launched by the national leader Heydar Aliyev is “successfully” continued by President Ilham Aliyev.
“Due to purposeful measures undertaken by President Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan and NATO have made “considerable progress” to strengthen their relationship.
He underlined the dynamics of extending partnership between Azerbaijan and NATO, as well as importance of the cooperation in the field of civil emergency planning. Reminding about the frequent natural and industrial disasters, Heydarov highlighted the importance of strengthening mechanisms to prevent disasters. “Azerbaijan will continue to contribute to this field and international rescue operations”, he said.
Heydarov pointed out the Ministry upgraded its facilities and formed a 300-strong international rescue group.
The Minister informed the participants about the recent floods in the country and rescue operations to eliminate consequences of natural disaster.
Heydarov expressed assurance the session would contribute to further expanding cooperation among NATO members and partner countries.
The session will continue on May 19 with attendance of NATO allies.