A foundation stone has been laid for the Zangazur corridor-Horadiz-Jabrayil-Zangilan-Aghband highway.
Prior to the ceremony, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and President of the Republic of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan viewed the construction progress on the Ahmadbayli-Fuzuli-Shusha highway.
Chairman of the Board of Directors of Azerbaijan Highway State Agency Saleh Mammadov informed the heads of state of the work done.
Saleh Mammadov said: Dear Mr. President, this is the Ahmadbayli-Fuzuli-Shusha road. This road will consist of four to six lanes. The length of the road is 81 kilometers. A 51-km section of the road from the beginning to the 50th kilometer is under construction by Azerbaijani companies, and the section from the 50th to the 81st kilometer is under construction by Turkish companies Kolin Insaat and Cingiz Insaat. A 6-km long tunnel and seven overpasses will be built in the part where Turkish companies operate. The total length of the tunnels is 6,500 meters. At present, the fourth and fifth tunnels at the entrance to Shusha have already been completed. One is 431 meters long and the other is 530 meters long.
President Ilham Aliyev: Tunnels are being built in Kalbadjar – 12 kilometers long.
Saleh Mammadov: Yes, the longest tunnel in Azerbaijan is being built by Cingiz Insaat – the Murovdagh tunnel on the Toganali-Kalbajar road. This is the largest tunnel in Azerbaijan. It is 11,600 meters in length. 350 meters of that tunnel have already been dug. There are pictures which I will show you.
President Ilham Aliyev: There is also the Lachin-Kalbadjar tunnel.
Saleh Mammadov: Yes, Gorchu Airport also has a 3.5-kilometer Lachin-Kalbadjar tunnel.
President Ilham Aliyev: What is the total length of the tunnels?
Saleh Mammadov: Turkish companies are building a total of 62 kilometers of tunnels in the Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. At present, Turkish companies employ 6,587 people. A total of 1,832 of them are Turkish citizens and 4,500 are Azerbaijanis. In total, 13,280 people work in companies operating in the Karabakh region.
The road the construction of which will begin today is the Zangazur corridor. It will start from where we are standing. This is the first junction. The distance from here to Aghband, to Armenia's border, is 123.6 kilometers.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan: You are going to Armenia's border, aren't you? You will go further.
Saleh Mammadov: Yes, we will move to the other side. Allah willing, we will go all the way to Istanbul, to Europe. May Allah protect you.
We also have three tunnels on this road. The total length is 3,610 meters. Currently, a fourth tunnel is being built in Zangilan. Work has already been completed on 160 meters of the tunnel. The whole road in this part is being built by Kalyon. Zangilan Airport is also located on the same road. The 20-km section of the road to the airport is being built by an Azerbaijani company together with Kalyon. Seven junctions connecting district centers with the airport will be built on this road. This junction will be at zero kilometers of the road the foundation of which has been laid.
This is the six-to-four-lane Ahmadbayli-Fuzuli main road. And this will be the road originating from this junction. It will have several feeder roads and stretch to Nakhchivan through the Zangazur corridor and from there to Istanbul, Inshallah. These are pictures of the construction work on the Ahmadbayli-Fuzuli-Shusha road, the tunnels operated by Cingiz Insaat. The work here is carried out both by blasting and compression.
At present, 45-50 percent of the work in the short tunnels has been completed. This is the work done during construction. We started construction there on the instructions of Mr. President in the winter. These are pictures taken at that time. In general, there have never been 4-6-lane roads in the Karabakh zone. Such roads are being built in Karabakh for the first time. These are the roads built by Kalyon along the Zangazur corridor. There was no life here either. The longest distance from this road to the existing Horadiz road is 1.6 kilometers and the nearest is 200 meters. Great work has been done, and “Kalyon” has done almost 45 percent of the work. In the future, with God's help, you will probably participate in the opening of this road in 2023.
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Presidents of Azerbaijan and Turkey then laid the foundation stone for the Zangazur corridor-Horadiz-Jabrayil-Zangilan-Aghband highway.