Azerbaijan has honoured one of the pioneers of its oil and gas industry in a lavish ceremony in Baku attended by president Ilham Aliyev and first vice president Mehriban Aliyeva. During the ceremony Academician Koshbakht Yusifzade, who just turned ninety, was awarded Azerbaijan's highest honour, The Order of Heidar Aliyev.
In an emotional speech president Aliyev spoke about the contribution of Yusifzade, who is also First Vice president of the State Oil Company SOCAR, to the Azerbaijani oil and gas industry over many decades. Aliyev spoke of his work with Yusifzade whilst negotiating Azerbaijan's oil and gas deals in the 1990s, and the huge input that the academician has had over the oil industry in Azerbaijan ever since Soviet times.
President Aliyev also used the opportunity to speak about the future of Azerbaijan's oil and gas industry, and said that there should be no mistake about it, despite efforts to develop the non oil and gas sector, it will be oil and gas which will remain the bedrock of the Azerbaijani economy for many years to come, and that the known reserves to date justify this approach.
source: commonspace.eu with agencies
photo: Azerbaijan president Ilham Aliyev honours Academician Koshbakht Yusifzade on his nintieth birthday. (picture courtesy of the press service of the president of Azerbaijan
Among those affected are the Armenian community of the city. A spokesperson for the Armenian Foreign Ministry said that at least six Armenians were killed and several others were injured.