State building and development of statehood is associated with the national leader
Q: The first European Games are approaching. How do you think what is the importance of holding this high-profile sport event in Azerbaijan?
A: The fact the first European Games would be held in Baku testified to Azerbaijan`s image on the international arena. “This event, which is of profound political, economic and cultural importance, is an evidence of Azerbaijan`s successes achieved in the sport field in the past few years. At the end of 2012, the European Olympic Committee made the decision to conduct the first European Games in Azerbaijan. It was a historic decision because, in contrast to other continental games, European Games have never been conducted before. It was a manifestation of great confidence shown by the European Olympic family in Azerbaijan.
It is a great honor and a great responsibility for us. We had little time, so we set to work immediately and established the Organizing Committee. Over this time the Organizing Committee has worked very hard and with great success. Today, Azerbaijan and Baku are fully prepared to conduct these Games. I want to applaud the Organizing Committee for this wonderful work. I believe that the decision to award the Games to Baku is due to several factors. First of all, it has become possible thanks to the successful performance of our athletes. In the latest Summer Olympics, Team Azerbaijan won 30th place. Among European countries we finished in 15th place. At the same time, a great young generation is growing up in Azerbaijan. Our young athletes are also delighting us. In last year’s Youth Olympic Games the Azerbaijani team rose to 10th place. This is a historic achievement.
In addition to this, a modern sports infrastructure has been created in Azerbaijan in recent years. More than 40 Olympic sports centers have been set up in the regions of Azerbaijan. All sports facilities created or renovated in the city of Baku meet the highest standards. We have a fairly broad experience in hosting international competitions. In recent years Azerbaijan has hosted many European and world championships. The rapid economic development of Azerbaijan has, of course, played a role in this decision.
Q: Special attention is paid to the development of sport in the country. How important is this factor in terms of raising a healthy generation?
A: Healthy lifestyle is on the basis of success, playing as an effective role in the fight against alcoholism and other harmful habits. In Azerbaijan, both Olympic and non-Olympic kinds of sports develop. We never put differences between these kinds because in Azerbaijan each kind of sports is necessary, important, and the sportsmen participating in competitions on all kinds of sports, is our pride. In Azerbaijan, we shall further give big attention to sports. Owing to this attention and care, the sports infrastructure is updated and modernized. Very big attention is paid to this question. Certainly, creation of a sports infrastructure has huge value. However, performance of the sportsmen, their successful activity is the greatest factors pleasing our people. Every time, when at the international competitions the flag of our country rises, our national anthem is performed, heart of each citizen of Azerbaijan overflows feeling of pride. It is glory of Azerbaijan, and victory of Azerbaijan. I am very glad, that very strong young generation of sportsmen grows in Azerbaijan. Now, in Azerbaijan to be a sportsman is very honorable. It occurs just because in society, the sportsmen are shown great sympathy and respect. Now, we watch powerful inflow of people wishing to go in for sports in the Olympic sports complexes constructed in various regions. Children, teenagers go in for sports. And the people who are going in for sports, are healthy both physically, and spiritually, they are far from bad habits.
Q: Certain circles are carrying out a smear campaign against Azerbaijan on the eve of the European Games. What can you say of this?
A: As you mentioned some international circles, helped by certain forces inside the country, have already launched a smear campaign against Azerbaijan on the eve of the first European Gamesu. The campaign is being carried out through the media outlets controlled by these international circles. Unfortunately, some local groups and international circles that are trying to discredit Azerbaijan’s achievements in economic, social, political, humanitarian and other fields, don’t want to miss this opportunity and attempt to make the First European Games the main topic of the smear campaign carried out against our country.
Led by first lady Mehriban Aliyeva, the Organizing Committee of the first European Games has carried out considerable work to ensure excellent organization of this important international sports event after the European Olympic Committees announced its decision. The issues related to the construction of new sports facilities, repair of existing ones, improvement of social and transport infrastructure up to world standards, accommodation of guests, security and others are successfully addressed, and this work is nearing completion.
The European Olympic Committees has highly praised the preparation work, and all this gives grounds to say with confidence that the first European Games to be held in Azerbaijan will be remarkable.
Q: May 10 marks the 92nd anniversary of national leader Heydar Aliyev. Preparatory events are held in all parts of the country. We would like you to highlight the national leader`s role in state building...
A: Of course, national leader Heydar Aliyev played an invaluable role in our centuries-long statehood history. His years in power - 1969-1989 - saw the strengthening of national spirit and national statehood idea.
"Economic independence is the essence of a nation`s political independence," national leader Heydar Aliyev said. He placed a particular importance on the country`s economic development during his both tenures as Azerbaijan`s leader. Heydar Aliyev was a great philosopher and thinker of the present. The philosophy of Azerbaijanism, founded and developed by him, determined special role of Azerbaijan in the present world, rests in the basis of national statehood, created a firm base for solidarity of the World Azerbaijanis. The problems of national revival, which in the last century seriously worried the Azerbaijani intelligentsia, thanks to Heydar Aliyev, in these years, turned to a strategic state policy, from the science, sociology and philosophy - to a practical and political plane. The national leader`s coming to leadership of the Republic is perceived as start of the national self-consciousness, return to the origins. The major ideological-political trend of the philosophy of Heydar Aliyev management, history of which just begins from this period, contains large extent of all forms and means of the national self-expression of the people, strengthening sense of national pride and realization of quick strategy pf development, able to raise the national conscience. National leader Heydar Aliyev was elected president of Azerbaijan of October 3, 1993. Thanks to his multifaceted activities the national leader ensured stability in the country, which embarked on the path of development. The national leader built an independent, constitutional and sovereign state. He ensured the strengthening of Azerbaijan`s international positions.
Q: National leader Heydar Aliyev is the author of the first national constitution of Azerbaijan. What role did this Constitution play in strengthening the statehood and building civil society in Azerbaijan?
A: Constitution is a set of fundamental principles of a state. Every sovereign state has its own constitution. The constitution is one instrument of the state and it has to ensure all security issues of the country and their people. So a constitution is a symbol of independence and sovereignty.
On May 2, 1995, Supreme Assembly of the Republic of Azerbaijan approved the membership of the commission preparing a draft constitution. In the first sitting of the commission, chaired by Heydar Aliyev, the head of state declared the parameters of the constitution. The head of state noted “… We should adopt such a constitution, which will be the main law, the historical document assuring the existence of the independent Republic of Azerbaijan on the basis of democratic principles for a long time. This is why our duty is honorable and at the same time very difficult… Our constitution should provide a basis to build a democratic, legal, secular, civil state in Azerbaijan, be the main law.” The constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan, adopted in 1995, laid the foundation of a state mechanism as a democratic, secular, legal and unitary republic. As national leader Heydar Aliyev said the major sense of this constitution is that it ensures the absolute independence of the Republic of Azerbaijan, territorial integrity of our country, inviolability of rights of the Azerbaijani people, inviolability of every citizen’s rights and indivisibility of the Azerbaijani people, of our republic, that the power cannot be appropriated by any force.