BAKU, Azerbaijan, September 7. Relations with Turkic states are a first-class task in Azerbaijan’s foreign policy, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said at the meeting with the participants of the 2nd meeting of the Ministers on Disaster and Emergency Management of member and observer states of the Organization of Turkic States and the international exercise "Baku-2023", TurkicWorld reports.
Addressing the meeting, President Ilham Aliyev said:
- I sincerely welcome you. Welcome to Azerbaijan!
The meeting of the ministers of emergency situations of the Organization of Turkic States begins in Baku today. This is a very important event. I am sure that the meeting will be very good and the results will be very successful.
As you may know, the summit of the heads of Turkic states will be held in two months. Major preparations for the Summit are underway, including management of emergency situations. As far as I know, the meeting is also expected to prepare an agreement on mutual assistance. There is a great need for this. We all know very well that the number of emergency situations in our region and the world as a whole has increased dramatically of late. There are many reasons for that but the fact is that unprecedented floods, earthquakes and fires have become commonplace. I would like to take this opportunity to pay my respects to the memory of those who died in the terrible earthquake and express my condolences to brotherly Türkiye. As you know, Azerbaijan made its efforts in the aftermath of this horrific earthquake, from the first hours and minutes. Currently, the final parameters of a settlement to be built by the Azerbaijani state in the city of Kahramanmaras are being determined, and we will start construction in the near future.
Azerbaijan has fairly extensive experience in this field. In recent years, work has been carried out to strengthen our material and technical infrastructure, the professionalism of rescue workers has increased. As a whole, our rescue missions in various regions, including the countries connecting the Turkic world, clearly show our capabilities and intention. We should always be by each other's side. All member countries are making their valuable contributions to the development of the Organization of Turkic States, including Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan has supported the strengthening of this organization at all times, and relations with member countries of the organization rank first among our foreign policy priorities. I have stated this many times as President, and we have shown it in practice.
The Turkic world is a big family, and I am glad that all member and observer countries have provided great support for the organization in recent years. Of course, this support should be provided in the following years as well. Today, the Organization of Turkic States has managed to take its rightful place on a global scale. However, we must continue to work hard so that our possibilities of influence are even broader. Here, of course, mutual assistance, the strengthening of economic relations, the constant coordination and consultations at the political level, mutual assistance in the field of security, i.e. all these are important factors and will further strengthen our union. I am sure that the position and role of our organization in the world will further increase in the near future.
I want to say again that relations with Turkic states are a first-class task in Azerbaijan’s foreign policy. It is no coincidence that over the past few years, I have paid numerous visits to countries that are members of the Organization. The heads of state and government of the member countries of the organization have paid multiple visits to Azerbaijan, and these visits are planned for this year as well. So this once again shows that we are on the right track.
Today, for the first time, a representative of Northern Cyprus is also present here with us. I would like to specifically welcome our Northern Cypriot Turkic brothers. The minister is present here as an observer, but at the same time, with his national flag. Of course, the flag of Northern Cyprus should and will be flown at our event. Azerbaijan has always been by the side of our brothers united in the whole Turkic world, and it is very gratifying that Northern Cyprus it was chosen as an observer to at the last summit of the Organization of Turkic States. On this occasion, I heartily congratulate all our Turkic brothers. This once again shows our unity and once again shows our resolve. It shows that we are and will always be with each other on the path of truth.
I welcome you again. I wish you good luck and the best results. Please convey my sincere greetings to the heads of state and government of the countries you represent.