Baku, 14 June 2023 (TDI): President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Türkiye visited Baku to meet President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan to deepen the two nations’ longstanding fraternity and collaboration.

The meeting demonstrated the intimate connection between Türkiye and Azerbaijan and their dedication to advancing each other’s economies and societies.

The visit began with a magnificent ceremonial greeting in which the national anthems of both countries were performed, followed by President Erdoğan inspecting the guard of honor.

Subsequently, the two presidents met for a bilateral session. They conversed about their strategic alliance, economic relations, and humanitarian crises, especially the recent earthquake disaster in Türkiye, where Azerbaijan’s assistance and morale support was greatly appreciated.

President Erdoğan paid respect to the late President Heydar Aliyev and visited the cemetery of Turkish and Azerbaijani martyrs, recognizing their sacrifice and highlighting the two countries’ historical and emotional ties.

At a press conference conducted after their bilateral meeting, the leaders of Türkiye and Azerbaijan underlined their mutual dedication to the “two states, one nation” principle. They reiterated the special relationship between their two countries.

President Erdoğan declared Türkiye’s preparedness to open a Consulate General in Shusha, signaling his country’s enthusiasm for enhancing ties in all spheres. This symbolic gesture would send a message to the world, especially Armenia.

The discussion also centered on the establishment of the Zangezur corridor. This vital land route would link Azerbaijan’s Nakhchivan exclave to Türkiye, strengthening economic and cultural relations between the two countries.

President Erdogan noted that the corridor’s rapid completion would result in significant road and railway connectivity improvements, boosting Türkiye’s better links with Nakhchivan.

In addition, he emphasized the Maarif Foundation’s ongoing educational endeavors in Azerbaijan and revealed plans for a new education center that would open soon.

Furthermore, President Erdoğan intended to create a Türkiye-Azerbaijan University, emphasizing his commitment to improving educational possibilities for Azerbaijani and Turkish youth.

The proposed university aspires to encourage intellectual interchange and make educational resources more accessible to students from both countries.

While congratulating President Erdoğan on his election victory, President Aliyev emphasized Türkiye’s important position in the global arena. He also reiterated the emotions of deep brotherhood and collaboration.

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Defense cooperation and defense industrial collaboration discussions were also held, highlighting the two countries’ close military relations. The leaders appreciated the practical integrated military drills. They acknowledged the Turkish military’s influence on the Azerbaijani army’s evolution.

The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to a joint foreign policy, emphasizing the importance of Türkiye-Azerbaijan unity in fostering regional development, prosperity, stability, and security.

The visit highlighted the growing trade volume between Türkiye and Azerbaijan, which has reached $6 billion. Joint energy projects and collaboration in renewable energy sources will further boost this amount.

President Erdoğan reaffirmed Türkiye’s commitment to assisting Azerbaijan in its post-conflict rebuilding and development.

The official visit of President Erdoğan to Azerbaijan solidifies the deep-rooted ties between the two countries and lays the ground for expanded collaboration in various domains. The Türkiye-Azerbaijan partnership stands as a model for regional alliance and underscores their shared vision for a prosperous and secure future.