Ilham Aliyev's speech at the interim conference of the Non-Aligned Movement Foreign Ministers was presented in video format

President Ilham Aliyev

Ilham Aliyev's speech at the interim conference of the Non-Aligned Movement Foreign Ministers was presented in video format
Ilham Aliyev's speech at the interim conference of the Non-Aligned Movement Foreign Ministers was presented in video format -reports that - An online interim conference of the Non-Aligned Movement's foreign ministers was held on July 13.

The event featured a speech by President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev in video format.

President Ilham Aliyev's  speech

-Dear ministers.

Dear participants of the event.

I greet all the participants of the Non-Aligned Movement Interim Conference of Foreign Ministers.

This year we celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of our Movement, the second largest political institution after the UN General Assembly. As peace, multilateralism and the strengthening of global solidarity underlie the Non-Aligned Movement, complex global challenges have increased the importance of our Movement.

The historical "Bandung Principles", which promote respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, as well as non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries, are fully consistent with the priorities of Azerbaijan's foreign policy. For this reason, Azerbaijan became a member of the Non-Aligned Movement family 10 years ago. In a short period of time, our country has gained great prestige and trust in the Movement. In 2016, by a unanimous decision of all member states, we were entrusted with the chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement for 2019-2022.

In October 2019, Azerbaijan successfully organized the XVIII Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in Baku, and we took over the chairmanship. In my speech at the summit, I stressed that Azerbaijan will take practical steps to protect the legitimate interests of the Non-Aligned Movement countries in the international arena, justice and international law.

Azerbaijan has adopted a detailed and ambitious action plan for its presidency. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has swept the world, creating new realities and challenges. However, we were able to react quickly and adequately to the new situation. We have focused our efforts on shaping the Movement's effective and joint response at the international level to the unprecedented challenges posed by the pandemic.

In this regard, as chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement, Azerbaijan has launched a number of international initiatives to mobilize global efforts against the pandemic. We initiated the Non-Aligned Movement Contact Group Summit and organized it on May 4, 2020. In addition to members of the Contact Group from different regions of the world, the online summit was attended by the UN Secretary-General, the President of the UN General Assembly, the Director-General of the World Health Organization, the President of the African Union Commission, the High Representative and the Vice-President of the European Commission.

As a practical result of the Non-Aligned Movement's online summit, a database covering the basic humanitarian and medical needs of the Movement's member countries was created. The World Health Organization uses this database as a reference source to identify the current needs of Non-Aligned Movement countries in the fight against pandemics.

During the summit, on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement, I proposed that the UN General Assembly hold a Special Session on the Coronavirus at the level of Heads of State and Government. In total, the initiative was supported by more than 150 UN member states, and the Special Session was held on December 3-4, 2020.

Azerbaijan has provided humanitarian and financial assistance to more than 30 countries, including the Non-Aligned Movement, in the fight against the pandemic. At the same time, Azerbaijan has made a voluntary financial contribution to the World Health Organization in the amount of 10 million US dollars, half of which is intended for the member states of the Non-Aligned Movement.

Against the backdrop of the global health crisis, "vaccination nationalism" is a cause for concern. Azerbaijan has publicly condemned the behavior of some countries that supply vaccines many times more than they need. To date, more than 82 percent of the world's vaccines have been purchased by rich countries, while the share of low-income countries is only 0.9 percent. Such an approach hinders the ability of developing countries, especially the least developed, to protect their populations.

In this regard, Azerbaijan, on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement, put forward a resolution at the UN Human Rights Council to ensure equal and universal access to vaccines for all countries, which was adopted unanimously in March this year. At the same time, we call on developed countries and international donor organizations at every opportunity to assist developing countries, especially the least developed ones, in combating the pandemic.

Taking into account the close connection between the difficulties, the Azerbaijani Minister of Health and Labor held online meetings under the chairmanship of Azerbaijan, and held meetings at the level of other line ministries, such as the Ministry of Communications and Education.

Under the Non-Aligned Movement's mandate at the Baku Summit, Azerbaijan, as chairman, is considering the possibility of establishing an institutional youth network within the organization. At the same time, Azerbaijan intends to develop the inter-parliamentary direction of cooperation of the Non-Aligned Movement member states.

In my speech at the Baku Summit, I stressed that the development of the Non-Aligned Movement's dialogue with other institutions and the expansion of the geography of cooperation will be among the priorities of the Azerbaijani presidency. I am pleased to note that during its presidency, Azerbaijan has managed to build bridges with other international institutions. For the first time in history, EU leaders attended the above-mentioned online Non-Aligned Movement Summit. EU member states later supported the Non-Aligned Movement's initiative to convene a special session of the UN General Assembly. The Non-Aligned Movement and the European Union are cooperating on a number of issues within the UN Human Rights Council.

Azerbaijan has defended the interests of the Non-Aligned Movement on all possible international platforms. Azerbaijan will continue to make joint efforts to increase solidarity within the Non-Aligned Movement and strengthen the Movement's position and prestige in the international arena.

The movement must also take strong, coherent and purposeful steps for the post-COVID-19 period. In this sense, a high-level meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement member states could be useful in terms of exchanging views on the recovery phase after the pandemic and determining the position of the Movement. Given the complexity of the challenges posed by the pandemic, it would be appropriate for the Non-Aligned Movement to initiate the establishment of a UN High-Level Panel on global recovery after COVID-19. The panel could make recommendations for global action to help the world recover from the pandemic.

2020 was a significant year for Azerbaijan, as one of the important issues on the agenda of the Movement has been successfully resolved. As you know, Armenia has been occupying about 20 percent of our territory for almost 30 years. Armenia has carried out ethnic cleansing against Azerbaijanis. More than one million Azerbaijanis have become refugees and internally displaced persons. Armenia committed the Khojaly genocide in February 1992, killing hundreds of civilians, including 106 women and 63 children. The Khojaly genocide has been recognized by 13 countries.

In 1993, the UN Security Council adopted four resolutions calling for the immediate, complete and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan. A number of influential international organizations, including the Non-Aligned Movement, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the OSCE, have adopted similar resolutions. However, Armenia ignored the demands of leading international organizations. Thus, Armenia's only goal was to maintain the status quo and strengthen the occupation.

In recent years, Armenia has deliberately destroyed the negotiation process, threatening Azerbaijan with a new war for new territories. In 2020, Armenia carried out three military provocations along the state border and the former line of contact, resulting in the deaths of our servicemen and civilians.

In September last year, Armenia launched a large-scale military attack on Azerbaijan. In response to this aggression, the Azerbaijani Army launched a counter-offensive and liberated most of the occupied territories.

Completely defeated as a result of the forty-four-day war, Armenia was forced to withdraw its troops from other occupied territories of Azerbaijan by signing an act of capitulation on November 10, 2020. Azerbaijan itself ensured the implementation of the above-mentioned UN Security Council resolutions.

Thus, Azerbaijan ended the 30-year conflict and restored its territorial integrity and historical justice through military-political means. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has gone down in history.

Azerbaijan's glorious victory is a celebration of international law, justice and the values ​​of the Non-Aligned Movement.

We appreciate the regular support of the Non-Aligned Movement countries to Azerbaijan's territorial integrity and sovereignty in accordance with international law and UN Security Council resolutions.

In the Final Document of the Baku Summit, the Non-Aligned Movement stressed the inadmissibility of the forcible occupation of territories and reaffirmed that no state will recognize the legitimacy of the situation arising from the occupation of the territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

In July 2020, the Non-Aligned Movement adopted a communiqué on military provocations committed by the Armenian armed forces on the state border. In addition, a special statement was adopted during the online meeting at the ministerial level in October 2020 during the Great Patriotic War. In these documents, the Non-Aligned Movement countries supported Azerbaijan's just position and expressed solidarity with Azerbaijan in its efforts to restore its territorial integrity.

At this point, I would like to highlight a specific event that took place during the Great Patriotic War. Some members of the UN Security Council have attempted to adopt a biased statement, ignoring the 1993 UN Security Council resolutions. However, during the discussions in the Security Council, seven members of the Non-Aligned Movement, who supported Azerbaijan's position, insisted that the text be discussed with reference to the above-mentioned Security Council resolutions.

Such a resolute position of the Non-Aligned Movement countries demonstrated their commitment to the "Bandung Principles" and the values ​​of the Movement. We have accepted their position as a historic gesture of friendship in our bilateral relations.

During the occupation, Armenia deliberately destroyed towns and villages, all cultural and religious monuments in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan. Even cemeteries were destroyed. Armenia's goal was to erase the traces of Azerbaijanis who lived in those territories for centuries. Our mosques were used as pig and cow stables. The city of Aghdam was destroyed to such an extent that it is called "Hiroshima of the Caucasus". After the liberation of Fizuli, our Army could not find a single safe building to raise the Azerbaijani flag there. All of them were destroyed by Armenia.

Regular visits of foreign diplomats and journalists to the liberated territories are organized. They witnessed the atrocities committed by Armenia. International media have documented and covered the facts of deliberate destruction and insult of the cultural and religious heritage of the Azerbaijani people, the destruction of cities and villages.

I will send my colleagues a descriptive book with brief information and photos about the situation in our cities and villages before and after the occupation. The book reflects the complete destruction of religious and historical monuments of Azerbaijan.

We have already begun reconstruction work in the liberated areas. Modern urban planning is carried out there. The liberated areas will be a green energy zone. I am confident that by demonstrating the unique experience of transformation, Azerbaijan will turn a devastated area four times the size of Luxembourg into a prosperous place with high living standards.

I have recently identified five national priorities for the country's socio-economic development for the next decade. Among other things, our dignified and safe return of hundreds of thousands of IDPs to their native lands is our main priority.

However, the main difficulty is the large number of landmines planted by Armenia. About 30 Azerbaijani citizens were killed and more than 100 were injured in a mine explosion after Armenia signed a capitulation act on November 10, 2020. In addition, mines are delaying the reconstruction process in the liberated areas and the return of IDPs to their homes.

Demining such large areas requires a great deal of time and resources. Armenia refuses to provide mine maps. The international community must force Armenia to provide Azerbaijan with mine maps of all liberated areas.

In conclusion, I want to assure you once again that Azerbaijan will do its utmost to contribute to the Non-Aligned Movement's international prestige, strengthen solidarity within the Movement, and protect justice and international law.

Thank you.

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