TODAY.AZ / Politics

Ilham Aliyev: Azerbaijan owns the strongest army in South Caucasus

28 June 2005 [08:29] - TODAY.AZ
On 25 June 2005, President of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev took part in the grand ceremony, dedicated to the next release of students in educational institutions of the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan. Speaking at the event, the head of the state declared, that as Azerbaijan be in the armed conflict with Armenia, the attention of the he state to the army is very important, Trend reports.
According to Aliyev, along with the growth of the economy and improvement of social conditions of the population, a great attention is attached to the National Army. The growth of economy, according to him, will be 18-20% this year.  For the last period the minimal salaries increased by three times. Good relations have been set up with the neighbouring countries. The role of Azerbaijan in international organizations is increasing. «The top problem yesterday is the settlement of the Upper Karabakh conflict”, Aliyev stated.

According to the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, Azerbaijan intends to solve this issue peacefully in line with international principles, restoring its territorial integrity. «The international community, NATO, The Council of Europe, and other international institutions accept the position of Azerbaijan. «Sometimes there are talks about compromises. In my opinion, peaceful talks are the largest compromise from the part of Azerbaijan. We understand that along with diplomatic peaceful negotiations, the Armed Forces’ potential may strengthen. I stated more than once, that strengthening of the economy and the Armed Forces is the priority.”, the head of the state said.   

According to him, in 2003 for the development of the armed forces $135 million have been allocated, in 2004 ???? - $175 million, in 2005 ???? – $300 million, which means the 70%- growth.. «We will continue this policy. In my letter to Milli Mejlis I pointed out at the change in the 2006 budget, related to the increase of funds for these goals. The main reason is transfer of military equipment to Armenia by Russia. These armaments are on the territory of Armenia, although it is not delivered to them”, Aliyev stated. According to him, Azerbaijan has the strongest army in the South Caucasus.

In 2006, according to Aliyev, definite moves will be made for strengthening of the Army. «The enemy must always know, that the Azerbaijani Army is capable to restore the country’s territorial integrity in any time», - he stated.

The President also said, that Azerbaijan will continue purchasing of modern military weapons, including aircrafts and helicopters. Active cooperation with international organizations, including NATO will also go on.

Speaking at the ceremony, the Azerbaijan’s Defense Minister, Safar Abiyev stated, that, a new training program for the Azerbaijani Armed forces has been developed since 1997 in line with the NATO standards, which allowed releasing even more qualified military personnel. He also noted a big role of Turkey in it, high-ranking officials of which participated in the ceremony. « I, as the Defense Minister assure, that the armed forces of Azerbaijan are ready for the restoration of the country’s territorial integrity and liberation of occupied by Armenians lands”, the Minister stated. ”

On the completion, the ceremony participants have been demonstrated military armaments, aircrafts and helicopters and the parade has been held.


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