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President Ilham Aliyev: We will return to our native lands and restore our territorial integrity

President Ilham Aliyev said in his speech at the Baku second Global Open Societies Forum on April 28 that Azerbaijan enjoys support of international organizations, “This is evidenced by the fact that 155 countries have voted for us during the election of nonpermanent members of the UN Security Council. This means that we were supported by the vast majority of the international community.

We were supported even by countries with which our bilateral relations were not very active. They showed confidence in us because they knew that we would keep our promises. Our main agenda as a member of the UN Security Council was to protect the supremacy of law and justice. I think these are two major elements of the present-day world. Unfortunately, both are grossly violated and there is no reaction to this violation.

There are four UN Security Council resolutions calling for an immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from our territories. None of these resolutions has been executed. The occupation continues. We have been exposed to ethnic cleansing. For more than 20 years Nagorno-Karabakh, a historical part of our country, as well as seven adjacent districts, have been under occupation. Of course, international organizations have adopted resolutions. Other international organizations, including the OSCE, the European Parliament, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and, of course, the UN General Assembly and Security Council, have adopted decisions in connection with this. However, none of them has been executed. Apparently, there are no enforcement mechanisms.”

“In my opinion, what happened in the early 1990s showed that in order to be free and independent, we had to make great sacrifices. But all members of our society were completely sure that this situation cannot last long. We will return to our native lands. We will restore our territorial integrity. The Azerbaijani people, one million refugees and displaced persons will restore their right to live on their native lands captured by occupiers now. In the early 1990s, the Armenians held an illegal referendum in Nagorno-Karabakh. Prior to that, ethnic Azerbaijanis, who constitute a third of the Nagorno-Karabakh population, were driven out of there. This was followed by an illegal referendum. Therefore, no country in the world recognizes this "referendum" and the self-proclaimed "Nagorno-Karabakh republic". In other words, international law, justice and history support our position. However, we clearly realize that this is not enough for the restoration of justice and international law. To do this, we need to become even stronger. Unfortunately, we are seeing that might makes right in international relations. In this case, what are countries of our region, countries like ours supposed to do?” he said.