President Ilham Aliyev’s messages from Munich - Commentary

President Ilham Aliyev’s messages from Munich - <span style="color: red;">Commentary
# 20 February 2017 16:49 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev held important bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference and also made very important theses at the panel discussions. The president's speeches in the first place had to do with fundamental issues of concern to Azerbaijan, Elman Nasirov, MP, director of the Institute of Political Studies of the Academy of Public Administration under the Azerbaijani President, told APA.

He noted that the Munich Security Conference was highly important in terms of showing Azerbaijan’s achievements and potential.

“From the Munich Security Conference’s tribune, President Ilham Aliyev gave important messages to the international community about the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict which had emerged in the wake of Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan and about the consequences of Armenia’s aggressive policy. He reiterated that the four resolutions of the UN Security Council concerning the settlement of this conflict still remain unfulfilled,” Nasirov said.

According to the MP, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev also shed light on some important facts about last week’s Baku meeting between Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford and Chief of the General Staff of Russia's Armed Forces Valery Gerasimov.

“President Ilham Aliyev noted that the Azerbaijani side had not suggested the location for that meeting. Rather the military leaderships of these two superpowers made the decision themselves. Azerbaijan’s growing international influence might be one reason behind their decision,” the MP said.

“At the same time, the Azerbaijani president noted that Azerbaijan is neither a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organization nor a member of NATO. Azerbaijan pursues an independent foreign policy and an independent foreign military policy. Azerbaijan’s balanced, swift, multi-vectored foreign policy course was a major factor that brought together the high-ranking military officials of the world’s two giant states. The Azerbaijani president’s participation in the Munich Security Conference and the statements he made was another confirmation of Azerbaijan’s contributions to international peace and security, and further boosted the trust in Azerbaijan,” added Nasirov.

Speaking to APA, Musa Gasimli, MP, director of the Institute of Caucasian Studies of Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences, said the statement made by President Ilham Aliyev during the Munich Security Conference that the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairing countries must exert pressure on Armenia, the UN Security Council resolutions must be implemented unconditionally and forcible change of borders of the states must not be allowed have once again openly expressed the position of the Azerbaijani people and state.

“The statement, which is of great important, once again demonstrates that the Azerbaijani state will not compromise in an inch of its lands to the aggressor, and relevant countries should be active in their efforts towards the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” noted the MP.

In Munich, the Azerbaijani president has also clarified the issue of the imminent normalization of relations between Turkey and Russia, and expressed Baku’s position on this issue.

In addition, during the Munich Security Conference, President Ilham Aliyev has clarified the issue of the imminent establishment of relations between Turkey and Russia, and also noted the position of official Baku in this regard.

According to him, Azerbaijan has always played and plays the role of a reliable bridge between Turkey and Russia, the two largest countries of the region.

The MP hailed the Azerbaijani president’s role in the normalization of Russia-Turkey ties, noting that good relations between these countries are beneficial for both the region and the world.

Elkhan Shahinoghlu, a political analyst, director of the Baku-based Atlas Research Center, also spoke to APA on this issue.

He noted that in his speeches at the Munich Security Conference the Azerbaijani president expressed his dissatisfaction with the activity of the OSCE Minsk Group.

“When asked about Russia, President Ilham Aliyev said that if Russia is willing, it can accelerate the peace process by influencing the Armenian government,” Shahinoghlu said, recalling the similar statement made by Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov.

“Russia obviously supports Armenia and doesn’t hide it anymore. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statements “the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is not an internal affair of Azerbaijan”, “the liberation of the districts adjacent to Nagorno-Karabakh should go in parallel with discussion on Nagorno-Karabakh’s status do not meet the interests of Azerbaijan,” he said.

The political analyst also commented on the illegal “referendum” that is being held Feb. 20 in the Azerbaijani territories, occupied by Armenia, to amend the illegal regime’s “constitution.”

According to him, most of the “observers” at this illegal “referendum” came from unrecognized Abkhazia and South Ossetia, though the two regions are under the control of Russia.

“Russia could have prevented their observing the “referendum”. But since Russia didn’t do that and instead created conditions for them and they are making anti-Azerbaijani statements in Khankendi, it means that some forces in Russia are still not interested in resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” he said.

According to the political analyst, as mentioned by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev at the Munich Security Conference, the aggravation in Russian-Turkish relations runs contrary to Azerbaijan's interests.

“Azerbaijan wanted these relations normalized as Russia is a strategic partner of the country. Despite Russia's support for Armenia, Azerbaijan has normal partnership relations with the country. Therefore, the Azerbaijani president put forward initiatives along with Kazakh counterpart Nursultan Nazarbayev and the process returned to normal. Both sides underlined the Azerbaijani president’s key role on this issue” he added.

Shahinoglu noted that the ceasefire has not been observed over the last two years.

“As mentioned by the head of state, what are Armenian soldiers doing in Aghdam, Fuzuli?! This strategy means that the enemy’s positions in occupied districts and around Nagorno-Karabakh would be destroyed. They draw conclusions. The Azerbaijani president emphasized at the Munich Security Conference that the war can increase the number of problems. This is a message to great powers. We cannot tolerate the status quo forever. The ceasefire won’t last long if the lands are not liberated,” he added.

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