The Azerbaijan State News Agency


President Ilham Aliyev viewed conditions created at one of commando military units of Ministry of Defense, and presented battle flag to military unit VIDEO

Baku, June 23, AZERTAC

President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Ilham Aliyev has viewed the conditions created at one of the commando military units of the Ministry of Defense, and presented the battle flag to the military unit.

Minister of Defense, Colonel General Zakir Hasanov reported to President, Victorious Commander-in-Chief Ilham Aliyev.

The head of state laid flowers at a statue of National Leader Heydar Aliyev in the territory of the military unit, and paid tribute to the Great Leader.

President Ilham Aliyev then visited the indoor shooting range designated for personnel to improve their shooting skills.

The head of state also viewed the conditions created in the indoor gym.

The Commander-in-Chief watched the intensive training exercises of the commandos at the outdoor training ground. The Commander-in-Chief then got acquainted with the conditions created in the soldiers' dormitory. In the weapons room, President Ilham Aliyev was informed of the tactical and technical characteristics of weapon samples, most of which are produced in Azerbaijan.

The head of state then came to the parade ground of the military unit.

President, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Ilham Aliyev was reported about the preparations for a ceremony to present the battle flag to the military unit.

The memory of Great Leader Heydar Aliyev and Azerbaijani martyrs, who gave their lives for the country`s territorial integrity was honored with observing a minute of silence. The national anthem of the Republic of Azerbaijan was played.

The head of state addressed the event.

Speech by President Ilham Aliyev

- Dear servicemen.

I congratulate you and all personnel of our Armed Forces on the upcoming Armed Forces Day.

Servicemen: Thank you.

President Ilham Aliyev: On the eve of this holiday, another commando unit is opening in our country. This is a very significant event. As you may know, after the Patriotic War, the Commando Force was established in the Ministry of Defense on my orders and the number of commandos is increasing by the day. Several military units are already in operation and more units are to be opened in the future. So, we are significantly increasing and will continue to increase our combat capabilities.

In the Second Karabakh War, the Special Forces showed tremendous professionalism and heroism. They played a special role in implementing a number of military operations. Taking into account all this, as well as combat operations of our time, the establishment of the new Commando Force has been set as a task on my orders and this task is being successfully fulfilled.

After the Second Karabakh War, the process of army building picked up further pace. Of course, during the occupation, army building was the number one task for us, as special importance was attached to preparing our Army and all our Armed Forces for the liberation of our lands, and we have achieved this. The Patriotic War ended with a complete victory of the Azerbaijan state.

But despite this, additional steps are being taken to build up the army after the war, and there is a great need for that. After all, the geopolitical situation in the world is becoming increasingly strained, there are new threats in our region, revengeful forces are rising in Armenia again. With all this in mind, the task of further strengthening our Army remains the number one priority. Of course, comprehensive measures are being taken to achieve this. After the Patriotic War, the process of purchasing new weapons has continued, many contracts have already been signed – for new unmanned aerial vehicles and long-range missiles for our country – the missiles that have great destructive power and high precision.

The process of upgrading the structure of the Ministry of Defense is also underway, and this process continues. I am sure that the decisions made regarding military education will bear fruit in the near future. The establishment of new combat units, first of all, the creation of the Commando Force is one of the important factors for increasing our combat capability.

Today, we are developing our Armed Forces on the basis of a unified program, and I am sure that in the near future our Army will rise to a new and higher level. I have already said this before but I want to say it again that the Azerbaijani Army today is even stronger than the Azerbaijani Army that showed heroism and professionalism during the war.

At the same time, the number of personnel in other special forces is being increased. The number of Special Forces of the Ministry of Defense has been significantly increased. I have already mentioned that the special forces of the Ministry of Defense showed particular heroism and professionalism during the war. The number of marines of the Ministry of Defense has been increased several times, and this increase continues. The State Border Service, the Internal Troops, the State Security Service, the Foreign Intelligence Service – the number of special forces of these institutions has been increased many times, and all this great force has one goal of protecting our territory, securing the territorial integrity of our country and, if there is a threat to our security, defeating the enemy with crushing blows. So, when I say that our Army has become stronger after the Second Karabakh War, I also take this into account.

I should also note that our successful economic policy allows us the opportunity to allocate sufficient state funds for army building, for the purchase of new weapons and equipment, and for the creation of new combat units. Taking into account our successful economic policy and the growing revenues of our country, additions have recently been made to the state budget. This year's state budget is already a record budget in the history of independent Azerbaijan. Despite this, as soon as we got the additional funds, we allocated a large amount to increase the budget and identified two main directions there – first, the restoration of Karabakh and Eastern Zangezur, and second, the strengthening of our military potential. So, this alone shows that one of the priority issues for us today is the building of the army and the other is the restoration of Karabakh and Eastern Zangazur.

All necessary measures will continue to be taken to further strengthen our Army. Azerbaijan's enemies know and see this, and they must know and see this. That is why any provocation against us does not go unanswered. Every provocation is met with a worthy response, be it a military or political response. Today, Azerbaijan is one of the countries that determines its own destiny, does not and will not depend on anyone, speaks its word openly and conducts an independent policy. So, our country is an independent country in the true sense of the word, because it is capable of conducting an independent policy, and it is primarily our military potential that gives us this power.

We were preparing for the Second Karabakh War and did not make a secret of that. During the occupation, I repeatedly said that the priority task for us is to regain our territory and secure our territorial integrity. I said that if the negotiations did not succeed, we would use force to liberate our historical lands. Unfortunately, some people turned a blind eye to my words. Armenia and its foreign patrons believed that they would keep our lands under occupation forever. We foiled their insidious plans. We prepared for war and dealt such a crushing blow to the enemy that the enemy is still unable to recover.

After the Second Karabakh War, we had to further back up our military victory on the political and diplomatic level. After the Second Karabakh War, it was us who shaped up the agenda in the region. Today, the processes in the region are still unfolding on the basis of our proposals. If we look at the first months after the Patriotic War, we will see that the patrons of Armenia were still trying to make us accept the old theses. We firmly rejected that, and today everyone sees that the Minsk group, which once made efforts to perpetuate the Armenian occupation, is no longer on the agenda. It has been consigned to history. Everyone can see that the forces that once demanded a special status for the Armenians of Karabakh are now making completely different statements. We see that the leaders of Armenia, who once said that “Karabakh is Armenia and full stop”, are now repeating my words: “Karabakh is Azerbaijan!” In other words, all this is the result of our policy during the last two and a half years. These issues do not appear by themselves. The events that took place in the direction of the Azerbaijan-Armenia conditional border, the military operations in our Karabakh region where Armenians live, and the creation of a border crossing point on the Armenia-Azerbaijan border in the direction of Lachin two months ago are indicators of our strong political will. So, we have taken all our steps based on a single program. If we analyze the events of the last two and a half years, everyone can see that there was a strong political will, power, logic and international law behind every step we took, and every next step was a logical continuation of the previous step.

Today, we have further consolidated our glorious Victory on the political and diplomatic level. Today, we have a say in the region. Some, including Armenia and some of its foreign patrons, are accusing us of revenge. It is a completely erroneous thesis. I have said this, I said during the war – we will take our revenge on the enemy on the battlefield, we will avenge the blood of our martyrs on the battlefield, and so it happened. The Azerbaijani Army did not waged war against the civilian population – everyone knows and sees this. Unlike Armenia, we did not destroy their cities with “Iskander”, “Tochka” and “Elbrus” missiles. The Azerbaijani Army has high moral qualities, fully implements and will continue implement the orders of the Commander-in-Chief. Therefore, those accusing us of revenge should go and look in the mirror. We demand justice, not revenge. We demand protection of justice. We demand that no-one interfere in our internal affairs. We demand that all countries respect our territorial integrity in deed, not in words, and in this case we will respect their territorial integrity.

Otherwise, our steps will be commensurate. Let me say again that we took revenge on the battlefield. At the same time, we should never forget the Armenian atrocities. During the occupation, our cities were razed to the ground. Our historical monuments were destroyed. Our holy places were desecrated and ravaged. It was our contemptible neighbors who did that. The international world, the international community and the corrupt European officials and deputies visiting Armenia every day are turning a blind eye to that. What is behind this injustice? Double standards and bribery! There is no other explanation for this. They go, take pictures near our border, and send us some messages. If they have the guts, let them come closer to our border. Those times are already in the past. We broke their legs. Because we have not forgotten it after the Second Karabakh War. Official representatives of some European countries entered our territory, Khankendi, without our permission. I said back then that if we had known about it, we wouldn’t have let them go there. Even today I am saying to them that if they have the guts, come and see what happens.

The ugly campaign being conducted against us today does not and will not matter. No-one can influence our determination. If no-one could influence our determination during the Patriotic War, of course, no-one can influence it today. Again, we demand justice. The conclusion of the peace negotiations with Armenia today is necessary both for us and even more for Armenia. This peace agreement should be signed on the basis of norms and principles of international law. Post-war realities should be taken into account in this peace agreement. This is natural. We have won the war, we have shed blood, we have given martyrs. May Allah rest the souls of all our martyrs in peace! We have fought a war in our own land, and today we live and will continue to live in our own land.

These are our terms and conditions. Armenia officially recognized the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan in October last year. I said that these words are not enough. More precise words should be said, and last month not only our territorial integrity was officially recognized by Armenia, but also the parameters of the territory of Azerbaijan were acknowledged. So, this is a positive development. However, these words must now be put on paper and Armenia must sign it. In such case, long-term peace can be established in the South Caucasus. Otherwise, there will be no peace.

At the same time, one of our preconditions is the opening of the Zangezur corridor. This is our rightful demand, especially if we take into account the fact that Armenia undertook this obligation in the act of capitulation signed on November 10, 2020. However, this obligation has not been fulfilled yet. The other condition is that the armed units of the Armenian army should be withdrawn from the Karabakh region. This is one of the obligations undertaken by Armenia. This has not been implemented either.

We are exercising restraint for now. Over the past two and a half years, we have been forced to show our strength to the Armenian side several times, first, in response to their military provocations and secondly, we sent them a signal that if they don't behave, if they don't honor their signature, the consequences will be dire for them. This is why we are still acting with restraint. We have never acted hastily, there is no need for that. Today, power is on our side, our position is strengthening over time, and international law is also on our side. The world community already unequivocally recognizes Karabakh as an integral part of Azerbaijan. We can wait. Again, we are in no rush. Today, we are engaged in extensive construction work on the liberated lands. We are returning the former IDPs to their ancestral lands. We have favorable positions along the border with Armenia. We are strengthening our positions there. Being on strategic heights gives us a strategic edge. Again, we have greatly strengthened our army in the last two and a half years. If Armenia and its foreign relatives do not understand all these factors, then they will only have themselves to blame.

Today, large-scale construction work is being carried out in Karabakh and Eastern Zangezur. Former IDPs are returning to their ancestral lands. During meetings with them, I said that they would return to their lands, and so it happened. I said that we would never allow a second Armenian state to be created in our territory, and so it happened. We said that we would expel the enemy from our lands, and we expelled the enemy from our lands, we raised the flag of Azerbaijan on our historical lands. So, this is a great and historic achievement. This glorious history will live forever in the hearts of the Azerbaijani people.

Dear servicemen, as you know, the people of Azerbaijan are celebrating the 100th anniversary of Great Leader Heydar Aliyev this year. The Great Leader has played a special role in the formation of the Azerbaijan Army. Back in the Soviet era, the creation of a military school named after Nakhchivansky was aimed at creating a professional class of officers in Azerbaijan.

I was in Shusha on the Great Leader's birthday, on his 100th birthday anniversary. I celebrated my father's birthday in Shusha, and I think that this step has a great meaning. Shusha is the crown jewel of Karabakh. After the liberation of Shusha, the Armenian state and government were forced to accept their defeat. Shusha is the embodiment of our strength, indomitable spirit, bravery and heroism of our heroic soldiers.

On the eve of this wonderful holiday, I want to once again congratulate you on the upcoming Day of the Armed Forces. I wish the Azerbaijani Army continued successes and victories.

Long live the Azerbaijani Army, Karabakh is Azerbaijan!


Then, the presentation on handing over the battle flag to the commando military unit was read out.

The Victorious Commander-in-Chief presented the battle flag to the commander of the military unit.

Following the commando oath-taking ceremony, the personnel marched in front of the podium with the battle flag under the accompaniment of a solemn military march.

Then, the Commander-in-Chief watched small and large weapons, armored vehicles and special equipment, including artillery, intelligence, engineering, communication and other combat equipment, as well as attack drones and unmanned aerial vehicles of various purposes.

The head of state watched the commando training.

President Ilham Aliyev also toured a canteen.

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