In his interview, Aghayev stressed the importance of the establishment of the Consulate General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles in 2005 in terms of economic strength, innovation and technology, and entertainment industry.
“Los Angeles is the largest city in the State of California, which is the world’s fifth-largest economy surpassing that of France, India and Russia. The Silicon Valley, recognized as a technological revolution, made California the world’s leading innovation center. The state has also a big cultural influence thanks to Hollywood,” he said.
The consul general hailed the growing bilateral relations between Azerbaijan and the U.S. in many areas such as energy, counterterrorism and economy. “Azerbaijan-US relations are of strategic nature,” the diplomat noted.
He pointed out that the U.S. was among the first countries to recognize Azerbaijan that restored its independence following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
Speaking Azerbaijan’s economic potential, Aghayev stressed the country’s significant role in ensuring Europe’s energy independence and delivering natural gas to European markets. He expressed hope that Azerbaijan will continue to contribute to Europe’s energy security in the coming years.
Aghayev also touched upon the cooperation between Azerbaijan and the U.S. in counterterrorism.
“Azerbaijan provides a substantial crucial transportation route for U.S. and NATO forces deployed in Afghanistan. Azerbaijan also plays a crucial role in the fight against international terrorism,” he said.
The consul general noted that the ethnic and religious tolerance has historically prevailed in the Azerbaijani society. He underscored the interfaith harmony and peaceful coexistence of representatives of all religions and ethnicities in Azerbaijan. He noted that Azerbaijan could be considered a model for many other parts of the world which suffer from confrontation.
“Although about 95 percent of Azerbaijan’s population is Muslim, representatives of Christian, Jewish, Bahá'í and other communities co-exist there peacefully. We try to promote Azerbaijan’s model in the American society and explain them the possibility of peace and harmony among representatives of all religions,” Aghayev added.
Nasimi Aghayev is the Consul General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles. The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan appointed him to this position on April 10, 2012. He holds the diplomatic rank of Envoy Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of first class with a consular district that includes California and twelve other Western U.S. states. Prior to this appointment, he served at the Embassy of Azerbaijan in Washington, D.C. as a counselor for political and public affairs. Joining Azerbaijan's diplomatic service in 1999, he also served at the country's Embassies in Austria (2000–03) and Germany (2005–08), as well as in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Baku.
Nasimi Aghayev also currently serves as Dean of the Los Angeles Consular Corps, which is the world’s second largest consular corps (after New York) representing 105 nations.