Ali Huseynli: Azerbaijan supports Russia and resists provocations
Azerbaijan has maintained and will continue to maintain strong political and economic ties with Russia in the current conditions of sanctions pressure from the West, chairman of the Azerbaijani parliament's Committee on legal policy and state building, Ali Huseynli, told the correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza.
"When several years ago the sanctions were imposed on Russia and some post-Soviet countries joined them, we not only refrained from supporting them, but, on the contrary, have started to deepen our economic relations with Russia, especially in agricultural supplies. It was our clear position with respect to unreasonable pressure on Russia," he noted in the first place.
Ali Huseynli described the Skripal case as a "provocative show." "I asked the Europeans about it, and even the UK's population does not believe that Skrypal was poisoned by Russians. We do not know for the benefit of whom it was done, but we do not perceive these accusations against Moscow as serious and well-founded. I want to emphasize that we feel any Russia's problem as our common pain. When children died in Kemerovo, Mikhail Zabelin and I went to lay flowers at the Russian embassy in Azerbaijan and saw there hundreds of people, including Azerbaijanis and Russians, which regard it as a tragedy as well. The same applies to politics, where the problems arising in Russia are perceived as our common, because we cooperate to achieve peace and security in the region," the Milli Majlis deputy drew attention.
"Everything that is done in the Caspian region serves peace for our peoples, and today we see a very interesting format of Russia-Turkey-Iran-Azerbaijan, which interact in different combinations on different issues. The ideological founder of this cooperation was Azerbaijan, since It is vitally important for us to stabilize the region. We fully understand that if we do not show solidarity in the fight against terrorism in the Middle East, terrorism will infiltrate Azerbaijan and Russia's North Caucasus. If there is any trouble - new sanctions, the expulsion of diplomats - we realize that this is the beginning of a new provocation, which, alas, involve post-Soviet countries now," Ali Huseynli pointed out.
"You can be sure that Azerbaijan supports Russia in any format, just like Russia supports Azerbaijan. And we are always ready to say about it. The Azerbaijani public does not take these Western shows seriously, our people have a clear understanding that this is all provocation. It is also important to note that hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis live in Russia and they are Russian patriots. In this sense, we are always interested in peace and stability in Russia, because supporting the Russian Federation, among other things, we support our fellow-Russians," the chairman of the parliament's Committee on legal policy and state building concluded.
Speaking about the upcoming early presidential elections, Ali Huseynli thanked Russia for its representative observation mission. "Such a large delegation speaks about the great interest of the Russian side in the events taking place in Azerbaijan. My colleagues and I observed the March presidential elections in Russia. The friendship of our two leaders - Ilham Aliyev and Vladimir Putin - is a very important factor for the relations between our countries. Thank you for coming here, we are sure that you are comfortable in Azerbaijan, in a country that is friendly to Russians," he stressed.
The Milli Majlis deputy spoke about the interparliamentary contacts between Russia and Azerbaijan. "Our inter-parliamentary relations have always corresponded to the overall level of ties between the two countries. There are literate, respected politicians from both sides in our interparliamentary working group, and we should always support each other in complex political moments, as it was before. When there were unfair statements towards Russia in international organizations, not only the interparliamentary working group's members, but also our other parliamentarians have always supported Russia. We see the same attitude on the part of our Russian colleagues, we closely cooperate in international organizations, the PACE," he said.
At the end of the speech, the politician drew attention to the fact that the essence of the Russian-Azerbaijani relations is much deeper than the official level of strategic partnership. "A lot of countries are strategic partners, but the personal friendship of our presidents, the work of our governments and parliaments, help to deepen our ties thanks to the special political culture of our peoples. Our relations can be characterized as confidential. Of course, they will continue to develop after the elections," Ali Huseynli summed up.