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President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and President of the Republic of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan have made joint press statements in Aghali village of Zangilan.
The President of Azerbaijan made the statement first.
Statement by President Ilham Aliyev
- Dear Mr. President, my dear Brother.
- Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
First of all, a warm welcome to you again, my dear Brother. You are welcome to Azerbaijan! Your visit is very important. You are visiting the lands liberated from the occupation for the second time. Four months ago, you and I visited Shusha together, and today we are visiting Fuzuli and Zangilan. The Shusha Declaration signed in the city of Shusha is a historic document. This declaration officially elevated the Azerbaijan-Turkey relations to the level of alliance.
Our joint attendance at the opening of Fuzuli International Airport today once again demonstrates our unity and strength. It testifies to the fact that Turkey and Azerbaijan as two fraternal countries are always next to each other. The construction of Fuzuli International Airport lasted only eight months. An international airport was built in eight months, and Azerbaijani and Turkish companies took part in its construction. So this is our shared success.
At the same time, we laid the foundation for the first private investment project in Zangilan district today. This is also a joint Turkish-Azerbaijani investment venture. It once again shows that together we are moving forward shoulder to shoulder in all matters, including the reconstruction and development work carried out across the lands liberated from the occupation.
Today's official ceremony in the village of Aghali of Zangilan district will go down in history. Official ceremonies are usually held in capitals. But we hold official ceremonies during all meetings. The holding of official ceremonies both in Shusha and in Zangilan today, the performance of the national anthems of Turkey and Azerbaijan, our joint steps will forever remain in history. We are writing this history together. We were together throughout the war and we are together today.
We are celebrating the first anniversary of the Second Karabakh War. Yesterday we celebrated the first anniversary of the liberation of the city of Gubadli. In two weeks, we will celebrate the liberation of Shusha. We will celebrate it as a great Victory Day.
From the first hours to the final minutes of the Second Karabakh War, Turkey stood by Azerbaijan. My dear Brother, the esteemed President supported Azerbaijan in the very first hours by announcing to the whole world that Azerbaijan was not alone and that Turkey was next to Azerbaijan. This provided us with great political and moral support, and gave us additional strength. Dear Brother, the Azerbaijani people today rightfully express their gratitude to you. You know that everyone in Azerbaijan loves you and treats you with tremendous respect. You did a lot for our Victory, and today, already in the period of creation, the period of restoration, you are with us again.
I know that you have a very busy schedule. You recently paid an official visit to four African countries. Following this, you participated in an important event in Turkey. After that, you found time and came here to be with us on this wonderful day, together with the Azerbaijani people. We appreciate this very much. This is an example of true brotherhood and friendship. This is a message to both the Azerbaijani and Turkish peoples and indeed the whole world – we are together. Our unity is unwavering and eternal.
Today, the Turkey-Azerbaijan cooperation and brotherhood have become a crucial factor in regional affairs and even on a global scale. Thanks to the leadership of my dear Brother, Turkey has already become a great power on a global scale, and no one can dictate their will to it. Recently, my dear Brother answered to those wishing to interfere in the domestic affairs of Turkey in such a way that, I believe, this served as an example for all politicians. The leader defending national dignity, defending and upholding the interests and pride of his people and state is here today, in Azerbaijan, in Zangilan, in Aghali. We must appreciate this. The factor of Recep Tayyip Erdogan is one of the most critical factors for the entire Turkic world.
I must also tell you that Azerbaijan will hand over chairmanship of the Turkic Council to Turkey next month. I am confident that Turkey, under the leadership of my dear Brother, will successfully preside over the Council. Cooperation and brotherly ties between the Turkic states will strengthen even more, thus, new opportunities will open up for the entire Turkic world.
Today, when we are here in Zangilan, it would naturally be wrong not to mention the Zangazur corridor. Zangilan is located in the East Zangazur region, and the Zangazur corridor passing from here will connect the entire Turkic world. Both Azerbaijan and Turkey are taking tangible steps to implement the Zangazur corridor. I am confident that these steps will bear fruit in the near future.
Today, together with my dear Brother and guests, we laid the foundation for a large highway. It is also a part of the Zangazur corridor. Thanks to the construction of this highway and railroad, we will achieve what we want.
Taking this opportunity, I would like to thank many Turkish companies operating in the liberated lands of Azerbaijan today. Thanks to their tireless efforts, roads and railways are being built in this region today, tunnels are being built, and infrastructure projects are being implemented. This is another embodiment of our unity and brotherhood. I am absolutely sure that Turkey and Azerbaijan, as two brotherly countries, will continue to move forward together, our peoples will become even closer to each other, and our states will continue to cooperate successfully. Thus, the joint strength of Turkey and Azerbaijan will become even more effective.
Dear Brother, I say to you “Welcome to Azerbaijan!” again. I say “Welcome!” to all our guests. I wish you and the brotherly Turkish people everlasting progress, prosperity and happiness. Thank you.
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Then the President of Turkey made a statement.
Statement by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
- Dear Mr. President, my dear Brother,
Dear members of the media.
First of all, it is a great pleasure to see you.
I am very glad to visit Fuzuli and Zangilan four and a half months after my trip to this beautiful region liberated from occupation.
On my own behalf, on behalf of my delegation and people, I once again express my gratitude to my dear Brother President Iliham Aliyev for the kind invitation.
During today's visit, we see the regions of Azerbaijan that have been liberated from occupation developing in a short time. Not every courageous person, not every politician is capable of doing this. Investing in such a short time, carrying out this work, I am sure, allows us the opportunity to convey the good news to our Azerbaijani brothers who were forced to leave their native lands. I am convinced that my Azerbaijani brothers and sisters will have the opportunity to return to these lands, to the beautifully rebuilt and restored places very soon. We are looking at the building in front of us, at the buildings to our right. These buildings are built in an original historical style, they have a great appearance.
Before coming here, we saw roads under construction that would connect Fuzuli on one side with Shusha, on the other, along the southern border with Aghband, and in the future, Inshallah, with Nakhchivan. We met with our brothers working there. These roads will form the backbone of multilateral transport communications in the region. The restoration work done in such a short time in Fuzuli is encouraging both for Azerbaijan and for our region and gives rise to a sense of pride.
Azerbaijan continues its work to develop this region, which will become an exemplary model for the whole world. Here, first of all, as Mr. President noted, tunnels, overpasses and highways, the foundation of which we have laid, are significant from the point of view of restoration work. I sincerely congratulate my Brother Ilham Aliyev, who is in charge of all this activity, and everyone who is involved in this matter. Congratulations to the contracting firms. The contracting firms have deployed their entire fleet of equipment and are working with their heart, which deserves high praise. Turkey will continue to participate in this work with all its capabilities to support brotherly Azerbaijan.
Dear representatives of the media, at the meetings held today with my brother Ilham Aliyev, we discussed bilateral relations and regional developments in great detail. We had the opportunity to assess the current state of affairs and plans for the future related to the energy, transportation and development of Karabakh by expanding cooperation in the economic sphere and trade. Most importantly, we discussed how we can develop our ties further, which, thanks to the Shusha Declaration, have reached the level of strategic alliance. We are guided by a common consciousness and are acting in the spirit of the slogan “One nation in two states”.
With its valiant Victory, Azerbaijan put an end to the occupation that impeded the realization of the region's true potential, thus implementing the UN Security Council resolutions which had not been implemented for years. The conditions are now more favorable than ever to ensure sustainable peace and progress towards the desired normalization. To do this, it is necessary to act in accordance with the new realities of the region. We advocate sustainable peace and comprehensive normalization in the region. The roads and railways that will pass through this geographic space will open up economic and trade opportunities not only for Azerbaijan and Turkey, but also for all countries of the region. The day will come when we will be able to travel from Zangazur to Istanbul, Igdir and Kars. The possibilities for turning the region into a transit and logistical center will expand. All neighbors of Azerbaijan, including Iran, Georgia and Armenia, will be able to take advantage of this development. In a nutshell, these are not isolating, but inclusive projects. Necessary in this process is the determination and mutual recognition of borders. It is this concept that should become the basis of good neighborly relations.
Armenia should demonstrate sincere resolve in these issues to solve problems with Azerbaijan. If it shows goodwill towards Azerbaijan, then there will be no obstacles to the normalization of relations between Turkey and Armenia. Sacrificing a prosperous future that will be built in the region by common efforts to settling petty scores and domestic politics will mean a waste of time. A peaceful, bright future in this beautiful region of the world is certainly possible. I would like to stress again that Turkey will also constructively respond to any positive step aimed at establishing a lasting peace.
I would like to once again express my gratitude to the President, my Brother Ilham Aliyev and the brotherly Azerbaijani people for the hospitality extended to me and my delegation during the visit.
Taking this opportunity, on my own behalf and on behalf of my delegation, we express our gratitude to my Brother Ilham Aliyev and all the ministers. Thank you.