Erdogan, Aliyev Issue Joint Declaration

BAKU (Combined Sources)–Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan made a joint statement Wednesday following the Turkish leader’s visit to Baku to discuss a proposed Caucasus Stability Pact.

“Turkey-Azerbaijan friendship contributes to strong ties between the countries. Our will has paved the way for the implementation of wide-scale energy and transport projects,” said the joint declaration.

Erdogan said that Azerbaijan and Turkey had the same position from the standpoint of maintaining peace in the South Caucasus. “The Nagorno Karabakh conflict must be resolved only within the framework of Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and on the basis of international legal norms. The Minsk Group’s efforts have not yielded any results for 16 years and we are very concerned about it," the statement said. "The Caucasus Peace and Cooperation Platform can make a contribution to peace in the region.”

In discussing the conflict in Georgia, the two leaders urged an immediate end to hostilities.

“We want the confrontation to stop. Georgia and Russia are Azerbaijan’s friends. We want our friends to be friends too. The recent developmen’s proved once more how delicate the stability of the region is,” the statement said.

Underlining the importance of stability for the implementation of joint projects in the region, Aliyev added that Azerbaijan recognized the territorial integrity of all countries and wants the conflict to be resolved peacefully.

The talks between the two leaders focused on relations between the two countries, the situation in the region, the security of projects implemented by the two countries, Turkey’s initiative on establishing Caucasus Union and other issues.

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