Welcoming the delegation, President Ilham Aliyev said:
- Welcome to Azerbaijan. I am very glad to see you. I am confident that your visit will strengthen the military cooperation between our countries. So far, this cooperation has been very fruitful, and we look forward to expanding our partnership.
First of all, I would like to express my gratitude to brotherly Pakistan for the solidarity and support shown during the war. Our war for the freedom of our lands lasted 44 days and ended with the victory of Azerbaijan over Armenia. We have liberated our territories, which remained under occupation for almost 30 years.
From the first day of the war, Pakistan has shown solidarity and support for Azerbaijan. Pakistan has supported the implementation of UN Security Council resolutions calling for an immediate and unconditional withdrawal of troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and condemned Armenian aggression. It was an example of true brotherhood and friendship. As you probably know, people in Azerbaijan have shown their feelings for the people of Pakistan and your country, waving Pakistani flags during the war. This once again demonstrates our unity and brotherhood.
The relations between our countries have a long history. Pakistan is one of a handful of countries of the world that does not have diplomatic relations with Armenia and has not officially recognized Armenia due to the occupation of Azerbaijani lands. Our people are aware of this and we appreciate it very much. Azerbaijan, in turn, has always supported Pakistan on all other issues, including the Kashmir issue. We provide this support at the UN, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and other international institutions.
Tomorrow, the Economic Cooperation Organization will hold a summit in the format of a video conference, and we will discuss economic cooperation between our countries. Referring to our bilateral relations, I want to emphasize that we will focus on the economy. This includes energy and transport. We hope that Pakistan will join the existing and emerging transport routes through our country. Thus, we will expand our cooperation in this area as well.
Of course, our military cooperation has great potential, and I am sure that you will discuss our future plans with your colleagues today. We are already familiar with the products of Pakistan's defense industry. As you know, we have purchased military equipment from Pakistan and want to continue this process. At the same time, we are thinking about joint military exercises. We think this is the right time.
We have already witnessed good results of the trilateral cooperation format involving Azerbaijan, Turkey and Pakistan in political and other fields, including defense. I believe that we will join our efforts to strengthen our positions and contribute to peace. Because our countries are in favor of peace and justice in the region. We had to restore justice ourselves when we saw that international law did not work, that UN Security Council resolutions were not implemented for 27 years, that the international community did not impose sanctions on Armenia, that Armenia was not punished and that the endless negotiations were deadlocked. So if international law does not work, it must be enforced. We have achieved this and demonstrated it to the whole world.
But we want peace, and we are promoting peace today. Thus, our military cooperation will contribute to the establishment of peace in the world. You are welcome again! I wish you a good time in our country and fruitful work with your colleagues.
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Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee of Pakistan General Nadeem Raza said:
- Thank you very much, Mr. President! First of all, I am very honored to meet with you and very grateful to you for such an opportunity. On behalf of myself, all the Armed Forces of Pakistan and the people of Pakistan, I would like to congratulate you and the people of Azerbaijan on your complete victory in the 44-day war. I must say that your victory was celebrated in Pakistan with the same enthusiasm. Mr. Ambassador constantly informed about the course of events. At any moment of the war, the operations of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces were the main topic in our media. Congratulations once again on your complete victory.
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