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Azerbaijan is pursuing a peaceful policy

Interview with  Head of Foreign Relations Department at New Azerbaijan Party, MP Asef Hajiyev

Q: Holding events of influential international organizations in Azerbaijan has become a tradition. How can you explain this?

A: Serious processes area taking place in the world and our region. That is why pursuing right, well thought-out policy is the key priority for Azerbaijan. From this point of view President Ilham Aliyev is carrying out wise and very successful policy. This policy not only ensures Azerbaijan`s national interests, but also considerably increases the country`s international influence.

The President`s speech at the annual session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe is a source of pride for every Azerbaijani. The major point of this speech was that President Ilham Aliyev showed the entire world that Azerbaijan was an independent state. Except for Armenia, Azerbaijan enjoys good and equal cooperation with all countries.

Development, stability and full safety in Azerbaijan encourage international organizations to hold their most important events in our country. It is evidenced by the fact that the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and NATO recently held their annual session in the capital of Azerbaijan.

Q: Despite all this, Azerbaijan faces double standards. What should be done to prevent and tackle this?

A: Certainly, there are double standards against our country, and this has its own reasons. After the collapse of the USSR, Azerbaijan was thrown into information blockade. The world community was receiving one-sided information. But after the return of national leader Heydar Aliyev to political power in 1993 Azerbaijan started to revive and embarked on the path of overall development. Its economy began to flourish, and the country started to benefit from information and communication technologies. Azerbaijan has already outclassed Armenia in information warfare. As a result of this some international organizations and parliaments of some countries adopt unbiased documents on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Azerbaijan accounts for nearly 80 percent of the total economy of the South Caucasus region. Azerbaijan is now one of the most rapidly developing countries. We have reduced poverty from 49 percent to five percent.

So this irritates some foreign forces, and they want to prevent Azerbaijan`s development. But their attempts certainly fail as the country is resolutely moving forward on the path towards development, stability and prosperity.

Q: At the OSCE PA Baku session, Armenian MPs stressed the necessity of living in peace. How do you think are their sincere?

A: A couple of years ago the Armenians were saying that the Nagorno-Karabakh either should be annexed to Armenia or be granted independence. But now they say that they want to live in peace. This means that on the one hand, the Armenian are living in very difficult conditions, and, on the other hand, they are well aware that Azerbaijan is rapidly developing and thinks that they must be part of this development. They also know that the world community neither accepted the idea of annexing Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia or its independence. The world recognizes Azerbaijan`s territorial integrity.

At the OSCE PA session in Baku, former president of the assembly Joao Soares stressed the importance of ensuring Azerbaijan`s territorial integrity. I thanked him for his support after the session. And he said that he supports none of the parties, but only justice and reality.

Q: We would like you to highlighted YAP`s foreign relations.

A: The party is developing its foreign relations in several directions. Firs and foremost, we maintain close cooperation with different political parties and political organizations in Europe. One of them is Central International Democrats Organization. We also have good relations with the European People`s Parties.

In Asia, we are members of the International Conference of Asian Political Parties (ICAPP). It groups nearly 350 political parties, which represent both opposition and government. Its governing body is the Standing Committee which has 22 members, and the New Azerbaijan Party is among them. Political parties of Russia, the Republic of Korea, Vietnam, and Japan are member of ICAPP. Only Azerbaijan, Russia and Kazakhstan represent the Commonwealth of Independent States in ICAPP.

In general Azerbaijan is a very attractive country for both Europe and Asia. Some countries want to learn Azerbaijan`s development model.

Q: I congratulate you as you were elected a full member of the National Academy of Sciences. We would like you to brief us on the recent congress of the academy.

A: The congress saw the election of members of the National Academy of Sciences. Some 43 people put forward their candidacy for full members, and 256 for correspondent members of the academy. The election was held in compliance with modern standards and in a transparent manner. Most of the newly-elected members of the academy are members of the New Azerbaijan Party.

Science is one of the key priorities in Azerbaijan as the government attaches particular emphasis to its development. President Ilham Aliyev is taking reforms to modernize and improve science to modern standards.

The congress also saw the adoption of the new statutes of the academy. The participants also adopted “Development Concept of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences until 2020”.