After the Azerbaijani forces suffered grave losses when they brazenly attempted to breach the border with Armenia beginning Sunday, President Ilham Aliyev trashed his own foreign minister Elmar Mammadyarov during a cabinet meeting Wednesday.
Reports of tensions between Aliyev and the foreign ministry have been circulating for weeks, with Turan news agency reporting last week that Azerbaijan’s National Security Service raided the foreign ministry and arrested top officials on charges of embezzlement as part of a larger “corruption” investigation.
Turan reported Wednesday that Aliyev was at a loss when Mammadyarov did not show up to a cabinet meeting.
“I could not find him, he was not at his office,” Aliyev told his cabinet on Wednesday, and openly expressed his dissatisfaction with Mammadyarov’s performance, accusing him of being irresponsible.
According to Turan, Aliyev then asked Prime Minister Ali Asadov to brief the cabinet on a conversation he had with the foreign minister.
Asadov said that Mamedyarov was at home at 3 p.m. “I asked him why are you at home? You have to be in the office and follow the instructions of the president,” the prime minister said adding that Mammadyarov told him he was working from home.
Aliyev, according to Turan, was also angry with the fact that Mamedyarov had allegedly discussed cooperating with Armenia on to combat the coronavirus pandemic.
“What kind of cooperation can we talk about with Armenia?” Aliyev told his cabinet, according to Turan.