The policy, which has ensured Azerbaijan`s sustainable development, is based on Heydar Aliyev ideas
Q: Azerbaijan will host the first European Games in almost a month. Two years late we will host the Islamic Solidarity Games. How do you think how will these Games benefit Azerbaijan?
A: Azerbaijan is developing comprehensively today, every area is developing, and the development of sport, of course, reflects the overall development of our country. There are all the conditions to do sports now. Wonderful sports facilities meeting the highest standards have been built and are still under construction in Baku. We can say that modern Olympic centers have been created in all our regions and the influx of athletes to these centers has been ensured. The creation of the sports infrastructure and our overall policy of promoting sports as an important factor in Azerbaijani society are yielding fruit. This being the case, we certainly have great expectations about the future and we are confident that our athletes will please us even more.
Azerbaijan is a sporting nation. This is noted by leaders of the international Olympic movement. The state policy carried out in this area in recent years has contributed to the fact that Azerbaijan is known in the world as a sporting nation. Our country has great sporting successes. Each year our athletes win hundreds of medals at various international sports competitions. The European and world championships held in Azerbaijan widely promote sports in our country, attract children, teenagers and young people to sports clubs, thereby ensuring continuity. Our outstanding athletes worthily represent Azerbaijan. At the latest Olympic Games in London we achieved a historic victory. We won 10 medals, finished the team competition in 30th place and in 15th among European countries. Of course, this link between the generations should not be interrupted. As young athletes, you certainly want to become Olympic champions in the future, and there are excellent examples right in front of you.
Q: Anti-Azerbaijani network get active every time when our country is about to host a high-profile international sport events. This time is not the exception...
A: Unfortunately, some local groups and international circles that are trying to discredit Azerbaijan’s achievements in economic, social, political, humanitarian and other fields, don’t want to miss this opportunity and attempt to make the First European Games the main topic of the smear campaign carried out against our country.
Amnesty International’s calling to boycott the First European Games, dissemination of disinformation on the measures taken in preparation for the Games, partial and biased articles published in foreign media and other issues are examples of these efforts.
We faced such provocations in the past - on the eve of Eurovision-2012 Song Contest. At that time, the international community was convinced that all this is nothing more than an insidious game of the forces intending to put pressure on Azerbaijan and impose their will on the country's independent policy. We are confident that the use of such primitive and feeble methods to discredit Azerbaijan will produce no results and urge those forces to abandon their intentions.
Q: Armenians across the world are preparing to mark the centennial of the so-called Armenian genocide. What tasks do we face in order to unmask so-called Armenian lies about the genocide and promote Azerbaijan`s realities worldwide?
A: The resolution on the so-called “Armenian genocide” adopted by the European Parliament is the most shameful, unfair, politicized decision with specific goals in the history of the European Parliament, and it does not reflect the truth and distorts the real history of World War I.
This resolution once again showed that double standards and Islamophobic sentiment prevail in Europe, many international organizations established on the initiative of the West, especially in the European Parliament.
For many years we have been informing the world, as well as European countries and institutions about the truth on the Khojaly genocide and real facts of atrocities committed against the Turks and Azerbaijanis by the Armenians in the last 200 years. However, the European countries, European Parliament, Council of Europe haven’t adopted any objective decision on the issue. Historical facts, documents confirm that no act of genocide was committed against the Armenians in Turkey in 1915. In that period when Turkey was drawn into war, Armenians formed numerous armed groups and started uprisings in the rear, launching assaults on Turkish troops, committing mass murder and inhumane actions against civilians in different cities and towns. Of course, the Turkish army took necessary actions to protect the civilian population from Armenian atrocities. And there have been no acts of genocide during the time Armenians were being resettled in different areas. But the actions that were carried out against them in keeping with requirements of war stood out with their severity. Therefore, assessment of the events that took place in the early twentieth century by a group of politicians or MPs, distorting a historical truth, without relying on any fact and studying the archive materials of that time, is totally wrong. The claims of “Armenian genocide’ are based on subjective views and are a manifestation of Islamophobia, anti-Muslim and anti-Turkish ideas. This is also a result of double standards prevailing in the modern world, especially in the West. Of course, the West’s efforts to distort history and form a misconception of the Islamic world must be condemned and all claims be responded to on the basis of clear evidence. The progressive mankind knows that such a thing never happened and this kind of decisions and resolutions only emerge as a result of efforts of different powers wanting to ensure their own interests.
Q: Recent decline in global oil prices has affected world countries. At the recent Cabinet meeting the head of state said that this has not influenced our country. what are main factors conditioning Azerbaijan`s sustainable development?
A: At the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers President Ilham Aliyev said that the funds invested in the Azerbaijani economy for many years, the policy of diversification and the development of the non-oil sector have enabled our economy to develop steadily and not depend on the oil and gas sector. Even the sharp decline of oil prices in the world has had no impact on our overall economic development. This is the uniqueness of Azerbaijan’s economic model, and these figures show once again how correct the path we have chosen is. “The non-oil sector remains a priority, because as of now the economy of Azerbaijan will develop in a diversified manner. I am glad that our non-oil sector has been accounting for a large part of the gross domestic product for some time now. I am sure that this percentage will gradually grow further, and thus the economy of Azerbaijan will be even less dependent on the oil and gas factor.”
Azerbaijan is confidently moving forward on the path of development. President Ilham Aliyev highlighted this issue at the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers earlier this month. He said that Azerbaijan has secured dynamic development, and it is gratifying that our non-oil sector has grown by 7 per cent. This was made possible as a result of sound economic policies carried out in recent years. The funds invested in the Azerbaijani economy for many years, the policy of diversification and the development of the non-oil sector have enabled our economy to develop steadily and not depend on the oil and gas sector. Even the sharp decline of oil prices in the world has had no impact on our overall economic development. This is the uniqueness of Azerbaijan’s economic model, and these figures show once again how correct the path we have chosen is.The non-oil sector remains a priority, because as of now the economy of Azerbaijan will develop in a diversified manner.” I am glad that our non-oil sector has been accounting for a large part of the gross domestic product for some time now. I am sure that this percentage will gradually grow further, and thus the economy of Azerbaijan will be even less dependent on the oil and gas factor,” said the head of state.
It is gratifying that industrial production has increased in the first quarter. As you know, in recent years, as a result of a certain decline in oil production, we observed no growth in industrial production. Industrial production increased by nearly 4 per cent in the first quarter of this year. This is a result of the work done. The past year was declared a "Year of Industry" in Azerbaijan, and this area was given special attention. Thanks to the establishment of modern industrial complexes and industrial estates in previous years, the development of small and medium-sized businesses, our industrial capacity has been significantly increased. As a result, industrial production in Azerbaijan is growing.
There is growth in agriculture. Growth in agriculture constitutes more than 3 per cent. I think that in the future we will observe great agricultural development, because the ongoing reforms, the improving work and our thought-out policies will give an impetus to more rapid growth in the coming years.
Q: May marks the 92nd anniversary of national leader Heydar Aliyev. As usual this remarkable date will be marked in all parts of our country. What is the role of Heydar Aliyev ideas in Azerbaijan`s making today`s accomplishments?
A:Heydar Aliyev played a crucial role in Azerbaijan`s modern independence history. The Heydar Aliyev era means a new era and a new history for Azerbaijan.The people do not forget Heydar Aliyev because he is associated with all positive changed that have taken place in their lives. National leader of our people served interests of people, state, society and its members, worked for integrity of the people of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijani land and state and did every job to improve and expand democracy and independence. We must admit that realization of ideas of the Azerbaijani state is linked to national leader Heydar Aliyev. Heydar Aliyev’s ingenious personality owns an exclusive place in the history of Azerbaijani statehood. As a bright carrier of the ideology of Azerbaijanism, Heydar Aliyev, due to his wise policies, unwavering convictions and historical vision, succeeded in materializing the idea of national statehood, building a modern Azerbaijani state and realizing the independence dreams of our people.