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Azerbaijan will successfully host first European Games

Interview with  Member of the Milli Majlis, member of the Executive Committee of the National Olympic Committee Rauf Aliyev

Q: Mr Aliyev, the first European Games are approaching. What benefits will these Games bring to Azerbaijan?

A: As you know Azerbaijan is renowned in the world as a reliable partner. Our country is pursuing successful domestic and foreign policy. This policy has boosted Azerbaijan`s development and made the country regional leader. Azerbaijan is called a land of stability and tolerance, a place where cultures intervene. All these factors increase Azerbaijan`s international influence. The foundations of these accomplishments were laid by national leader Heydar Aliyev, and this policy is today successfully continued by President Ilham Aliyev.

But there are also certain circles who envy Azerbaijan`s successes and they are carrying out smear campaign against our country. But these efforts will be ineffective as usual. There is wide interest in the European Games all over the world. The preparations are carried out under personal supervision of President Ilham Aliyev. And the preparation work continues successfully led by first lady Mehriban Aliyeva. Azerbaijan will successfully host first European Games, and this will contribute to improving the country`s international prestige.

Q: What can you say of the sports infrastructure in the country?

A: Azerbaijan has made great achievements in the years of independence. A lot has been done during this period in the development of sport and support of the Olympic movement. We held numerous international events in Azerbaijan, including European and world championships. Our athletes achieved good results on international arena. All this has been possible thanks to the attention of President Ilham Aliyev. Extensive measures are being taken in preparation for the inaugural European Olympic Games. On the instruction of the President, modern sports centers meeting the highest standards are built, while the existing sports facilities undergo major overhaul and are put back in operation in the country. This was the main factor that made the European sports community grant the inaugural Games to Azerbaijan.

Q: We would like you to highlight the role of state programs and legislation in the development of sports in the country?

A: Azerbaijan is a country whose accomplishments have been made according to concepts. Achievements of our athletes are being made on the basis of conceptions and state programs. As our President said development of sport is one of the key government priorities. It is a delightful fact that the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has signed so many Decrees and Orders related to physical education and sports in our country.

Serious measures are taken to carry out enlightenment among youth. Development of youth is also among key priorities for the government. This issue is stipulated by numerous conceptions and state programs. Special attention is paid to stimulating youth to be engaged in sports and live a healthy life.

Q: As a member of parliament, we would like to learn your opinion on the European Parliament`s resolution on the so-called Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

A: The resolution on the so-called Armenian genocide adopted by the European Parliament is groundless, biased and not serious and constitutes a vivid example of double standards. The resolution promoted by certain circles at the European Parliament that are under the influence of Armenia, and the Armenian lobby, and in general, the use of the phrase of ‘Armenian genocide’ are the attempts to falsify the history and its interpretation for political purposes. The resolution on the Armenian territorial claims against Azerbaijan adopted by the European Parliament in the late 80s was one of the contributing factors that resulted in the occupation of Azerbaijani territories by Armenia, deaths of tens of thousands of Azerbaijanis and fact that more than one million people became refugees and IDPs

The European Union’s resolution dated 15 April 2015 also supports the unfounded claims of Armenia and leads to the further escalation of tension in the region.

Instead of pursuing so-called Armenian genocide claims by falsifying the history, Armenia's acknowledgment of its political, legal and moral responsibility for the crimes against humanity committed against the Azerbaijani people, ceasing its aggression and occupation against Azerbaijan and relinquishing its territorial claims against the neighboring countries, would contribute to the restoration of peace and stability in the region and would serve for Armenia's escape from the miserable situation that it faces.