In his article, Gut says: “Preliminary results of the April 11 presidential election in Azerbaijan have been announced. The incumbent head of Azerbaijan state, Chairman of the New Azerbaijan Party Ilham Aliyev has garnered 86.09 percent of votes in the election, according to the votes counted in 3,675 polling stations, said Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) Mazahir Panahov in an event dedicated to results of the presidential election.”
“A total of 5,314,365 people in Azerbaijan have the right to vote, 50.78 percent of which are women and 49.22 percent are men. On the voting day, 5,426 permanent polling stations and 215 temporary polling stations in 125 constituencies operated in the country. Web cameras were installed in 1,000 polling stations in 119 electoral districts. During the day, the voting process could be observed online from the website of the Central Election Commission (CEC). 894 international observers (61 organizations, 59 countries) and 58,175 local observers observed the election.”
“I first participated in the presidential elections in Azerbaijan as an international observer. I can say that the elections in Azerbaijan will be the beginning of new reforms and new achievements. I think that the presidential elections on April 11 was held according to the requirements international norms and rules and at a high level. Azerbaijan was doing its utmost to avoid any defects in the implementation of laws. I believe that the elections have demonstrated the will of the people of Azerbaijan and Azerbaijan people know who right candidate is for new presidential period,” Gut says.
“The presidential elections in Azerbaijan are conducted openly and transparently. An Israeli delegation of nine people was visiting Azerbaijan to monitor the election process, including members of the Knesset, ex-ministers, and the former head of the Israel National Security Council. The rank of our delegation was very high, representative.”
“An independent policy of Ilham Aliyev based on national interests is the cornerstone of Azerbaijan’s foreign policy. Aliyev's foreign policy strategy is based on accurate diplomacy and a balanced foreign politics. An independent foreign policy primarily rests on the aspiration to forge equal relations with all countries,” Gut says.
“Azerbaijan is affiliated with no military-political block and focuses on beneficial cooperation with countries of all shapes and sizes. Azerbaijan does not tolerate the language of pressure, and cooperation with foreign partners is based solely on reciprocity. Because of the balanced multi vector diplomacy of Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan today has its own word on the international political arena and is considered to be the most important in geographical sense and the most powerful in economical and defense sense, country in the region of Caucasus. It is undisputable fact that the Ilham Aliyev's foreign policy is very clear and predictable.”
He says: “Azerbaijan Republic is in favor of fruitful bilateral relations with all the countries, relations which are based on mutual interests, shared values, mutual respect, non-interference into each other’s internal affairs, and with a spirit of partnership. This approach already proves that it leads to positive results. Azerbaijan's foreign policy is an independent foreign policy.”
“Azerbaijan is the most powerful country in the South Caucasus region. Today it is a factual reality that no country in Eurasia has closer or warmer ties with Israel than Azerbaijan. Over the 25-year history of diplomatic relations between the two states proved the necessity and viability of a strategic relationship between the Jewish state and the state with the Muslim majority. Our friendly states indeed act as true and reliable strategic partners. Azerbaijanis and Jews, in fact, cannot only co-exist, but also be real friends and develop and strengthen their relations.”
“As an Israeli citizen, I can proudly say that the President Ilham Aliyev shows a great degree of respect and attention to its Jewish community which an integral part of the contemporary Azerbaijani society. Under the patronage of President Aliyev two synagogues and the largest Jewish educational center in the South Caucasus have been built. Plans are in place for the first Azerbaijani Jewish museum, which will be the first Jewish museum in the South Caucasus,” Gut says.
“One of the biggest challenges of Azerbaijan's foreign policy is the resolution of the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan. More 25 years Azerbaijan and Armenian live in a situation of no war, no peace. In 1994 the ceasefire regime was established. Since that time, despite various efforts of the international community, they have not achieved a peaceful settlement. It is true that now the negotiation process is more active, more promising and has already certain results – but it is not enough to finalise the deal and to find a solution which will be based on norms and principles of international law and will restore territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. This conflict must be resolved only on the basis of international law and the decisions of international organizations,” he says.
“The energy policy shaped by Heydar Aliyev and further enhanced under the incumbent President Ilham Aliyev aimed to uphold the country’s national interests. That strategy helped Azerbaijan to secure one of the leading roles in various regional and global projects. Today, Azerbaijan is a steadfast partner in the energy security area and plays a significant role in ensuring the energy security of European countries. It is necessary to point out that even if Israel is one of the main clients to purchase Azerbaijani oil at the world market, it has several more important reasons to seek stronger relations with Baku. A significant portion of the oil consumed by Israel (an estimated 65 percent) is imported from Azerbaijan or by way of Azerbaijan through the Baku-Tbilsi-Ceyhan
(BTC) major oil export pipeline.”
“Baku serves the linchpin for energy diversity and security for Europe and Western markets, as Azerbaijan is not only the major energy and transport hub in the region, but a major producer of oil and natural gas that presents Europe with a non-Russian, non-OPEC and non-Iranian energy alternative. Azerbaijani pipelines, like the BTC (the largest oil pipeline in the world next to America’s Alaskan pipeline) pumps oil from the Caspian Sea through Georgia and to the Mediterranean Sea, terminating in the
Turkish port city of Ceyhan.”
“We have built strong state. We should make Azerbaijan even stronger and I am confident that we will do that. The path we are going on is a glorious path. It is a path of victory and a success. I am confident that we will always go on the path of victories. Go forward to new victories!" - said yesterday lham Aliyev,” Gut concludes.
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