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

23 June 2023, 12:05
Ilham Aliyev viewed conditions created at one of commando military units of Ministry of Defense, and presented battle flag to military unit

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 enhance 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. He then got acquainted with the conditions created in the soldiers' quarters. In the armory, 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 arrived at the military unit parade ground.

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 our Armed Forces personnel on the upcoming Armed Forces Day.

Servicemen: Thank you.

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

In the Second Karabakh War, the Special Forces showed tremendous professionalism and heroism. They played a unique role in executing a number of military operations. Considering all this, as well as the combat operations of our time, establishing the new Commando Force has been set as a task on my orders, which is being successfully implemented.

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 particular 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 for the Azerbaijan state.

But despite this, additional steps are 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 emerging threats in our region, and 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 taken to achieve this. After the Patriotic War, purchasing new weapons has continued, and many contracts have already been signed – for new unmanned aerial vehicles and long-range missiles for our country –missiles with considerable destructive power and high precision.

The process of upgrading the structure of the Ministry of Defense is also underway. I am confident that the decisions made regarding military education will bear fruit shortly. The establishment of new combat units, first of all, the creation of the Commando Force is one of the significant factors in increasing our combat capability.

Today, we are developing our Armed Forces based on a unified program, and I am sure our Army will soon rise to a new level. I have already said this before, but I want to repeat that the Azerbaijani Army today is even more potent than the 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 exceptional heroism and professionalism during the war. The number of marines in the Ministry of Defense has been increased several times, and the process is ongoing. The State Border Service, the Internal Troops, the State Security Service, and the Foreign Intelligence Service – these institutions’ special forces have been increased multiple times. This mighty force aims to protect our territory, secure our country's territorial integrity and, if there is a threat to our security, defeat the enemy with crushing blows. So, when I say that our Army has become stronger after the Second Karabakh War, I also consider this.

I should also note that our successful economic policy allows us to allocate sufficient state funds for army building, the purchase of new weapons and equipment, and the creation of new combat units. Considering 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 received additional funds, we allocated a considerable amount to increase the budget and identified two main directions: restoring Karabakh and East Zangezur and strengthening 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 East Zangazur.

All necessary measures will continue to strengthen our Army further. Azerbaijan's enemies know and see this, and they must. That is why any provocation against us does not go unanswered. Every provocation is met with a fitting response, be it military or political. Today, Azerbaijan is one of the countries that determine its destiny, does not and will not depend on anyone, makes its voice heard and pursues 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 our priority was 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, my words fell on deaf ears. Armenia and its foreign patrons believed 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 it could not recover.

After the Second Karabakh War, we had to further back up our military victory on the political and diplomatic levels. After the Second Karabakh War, we shaped the agenda in the region. Today, the processes in the region are still unfolding based on our proposals. If we look at the first months after the Patriotic War, we will see that the patrons of Armenia were attempting to make us accept the old theses. We firmly rejected that, and today everyone sees that the Minsk Group, which once attempted 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 outcome 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 Azerbaijan-Armenia border in the direction of Lachin two months ago are a manifestation of our strong political will. So, we have taken all our steps based on a single program. Let's analyze the events of the last two and a half years. Everyone can see that there was a solid political will, power, logic and international law behind every step we took. Every next step was a logical continuation of the previous one.

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 an entirely erroneous thesis. I have said this, and I said during the war – we will take our revenge on the enemy on the battlefield, avenge the blood of our martyrs on the battlefield, and so it happened. The Azerbaijani Army did not wage 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 and fully implements and will continue implementing the Commander-in-Chief’s orders. Therefore, those accusing us of revenge should look in the mirror. We demand justice, not revenge. We demand the 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 sites 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 daily are turning a blind eye to that. What is behind this injustice? Double standards and corruption! There is no other explanation for this. They go, take pictures near our border, and send us 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 we would not have let them go there if we had known about it. Even today, I am saying to them that if they have the guts, come and see what happens.

The sordid campaign against us today does not and will not matter. No one can impact our determination. If no one could influence our determination during the Patriotic War, 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 so for Armenia. This peace agreement should be signed based on 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, shed blood, and given martyrs. May Allah rest the souls of all our martyrs in peace! We have fought a war in our land; today, we live and will continue to live in our 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 phrases should have been declared, and Armenia officially recognized last month not only our territorial integrity 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 given that Armenia undertook this obligation in the act of capitulation signed on November 10, 2020. However, this obligation has yet to be fulfilled. 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 yet to be 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. Secondly, we sent them a signal that if they didn’t behave or honor their signature, the consequences would 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 on our side. The international 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 significantly 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 East Zangezur. Former IDPs are returning to their native lands. During meetings with them, I said they would return to their lands, which happened. I said we would never allow a second Armenian state to be created in our territory, so it never 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 across our historical lands. So, this is an outstanding 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 played a unique role in forming 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 anniversary. I celebrated my father's birthday in Shusha, which has a significant 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 embodies our strength, unwavering 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 the battle flag to the commando military unit was read out.

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

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

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

The head of state observed the commando training.

President Ilham Aliyev also toured a cafeteria.