JEYHUN BAYRAMOV, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan, underscored that his country — in its national capacity and as a Chair of the Non-Aligned Movement — consistently contributes to peace, security and the sustainable development agenda through promoting international solidarity and multilateralism. In this vein, he spotlighted that his Government has spearheaded the establishment of the Movement’s Youth Organization, Women’s Platform and Parliamentary Network. Further, recalling that his country has been at the forefront of a global response to the pandemic, he reported that the President of Azerbaijan, in his capacity as the Movement’s Chair, unveiled two global calls to support the post-pandemic recovery of Africa and small island developing States. Azerbaijan responded to these calls by becoming the first donor. More so, since 2020, his country has provided humanitarian, economic and technical assistance worth $300 million to more than 130 nations.
On sustainable development, he said that, in less than two decades, poverty in Azerbaijan decreased from 49 to 5 per cent and the external public debt for the current year is expected to be around 10 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP) — one of the lowest globally. Azerbaijan also voluntarily pledged to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by up to 40 per cent by 2050 and is also planning to become an exporter of green electricity to Europe and is a key player in developing transregional connectivity projects. Turning to relations with Armenia, his country initiated normalization and peace efforts based on mutual recognition of and respect for each other's sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of borders. However, Armenia continues to imitate talks, backtrack from agreements, commit provocations, ignite tensions and interfere into Azerbaijan’s internal affairs.
This week, following mine planting by an “Armenian sabotage group” that caused the deaths of Azerbaijani citizens, his country launched a counter-terrorism operation to neutralize illegal armed formations, he reported, adding that all measures were limited, proportionate and in compliance with humanitarian law. Embarking on the practical implementation of disarmament and demobilization, he reiterated that his country is determined to reintegrate ethnic Armenians residing in the Karabakh region as equal citizens. Reaffirming Azerbaijan’s readiness for a genuine dialogue with Armenia, he urged international actors to impartially support the negotiations. Also expressing concern over contamination of Azerbaijani territories with landmines, he called for international assistance in humanitarian mine action capacity. Ensuring accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity is key for normalization and reconciliation, he said, noting that Azerbaijan initiated judicial proceedings against Armenia.
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