Azerbaijani president Ilham Aliyev called his recent meeting with the Armenian president “successful”, in an official reception to mark Azerbaijan’s national day. Saturday marks 98 years since the first Azerbaijan republic was founded at the end of the first world war.
“I'm convinced that the year 2016 will be successful for our country,” he said, also mentioning the on-going military build-up in Karabakh.
“The political leadership of Armenia, nationalist groups, people with constant hatred to Azerbaijan, want to disrupt [Azerbaijan’s] positive trends, erase them,” he said, according to APA.az. “Our territorial integrity is not a subject of the talks, and I think that the Vienna meeting was successful.”
Aliyev and Serzh Sargsyan of Armenia sat down together on May 16 in the Austrian capital for their first talks since a four-day war at the beginning of April. Another meeting is set to take place some time in June.
“I am glad that the leaders, foreign ministers of the countries co-chairing the Minsk Group, other members have unambiguously stated that the status quo is unacceptable and must be changed,” Aliyev said.
“Changing the status quo means the end of the occupation, because the status quo satisfies Armenia, they do not want peace. They want the status quo remained eternal. They want to have endless negotiations.”
Leaders from around the world congratulated Azerbaijan on its founding day.
“On behalf of the United States, I congratulate you and the people of Azerbaijan on the 98th anniversary of Azerbaijan’s founding as the world’s first Muslim-majority secular democracy,” said President Obama.
PHOTO: Ilham Aliyev
Armenians throughout the world mark Genocide Day on 24 April - remembering those killed in the attrocities committed in Anatolia in the last days of the Ottoman Empire in 1915