Azerbaijan’s First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva is a brilliant example of woman's leadership, Valdis Zatlers, former president of Latvia, Member of the Nizami Ganjavi International Center, told Trend.
“Due to its balanced foreign policy and active intercultural dialogue, Azerbaijan has become a trustful partner to many international actors. Baku has become an important place for various humanitarian, intercultural and interreligious summits. First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva has always played an active and important role in these processes. I clearly remember the international forum on women's role in intercultural dialogue organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation led by Mehriban Aliyeva. This forum was held in June 2008. First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva has really great experience in intercultural relations and she is a brilliant example of woman's leadership inspiring women not only in Azerbaijan but also worldwide. As an appreciation for First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva’s contributions to global projects and advancement of education, science and culture Nizami Ganjavi International Center presented her the Gold Medal of the Nizami Ganjavi International Center,” said Zatlers.
He pointed out that Azerbaijan can be proud of several moments in its history regarding women rights. “Today evidently Mehriban Aliyeva is a well-known personality showing the rising role of women in Azerbaijan's public and political life. I am hundred percent sure that everybody knows and admires her. You will not find a better person for this role. She is the woman who encourages other women to play an active role in society.”
Talking about the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Zatlers emphasized the efforts of Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev towards promoting multilateral cooperating in fighting the pandemic.
“The efforts of Azerbaijan's President were a great move. We need more people who show global responsibility. Any effort of bringing international actors together for global action is of great value. It's not an easy task to bring the world together for fruitful cooperation. You need to make more and more efforts and never give up your goals. That is exactly what President Ilham Aliyev does. He is not only a national leader. He is a respected international leader. I will always support his new initiatives,” he said.
Further, Zatlers noted that COVID-19 pandemic was and still is a hard time for any international NGO and think-tank.
“Nizami Ganjavi International Center focused not only on challenging problems of humanity but it is also designed for permanent nonstop discussions between bright minds of global society. It is also designed to show governments and international institutions the upcoming serious challenges for humanity. Face to face round table discussions often bring us closer to possible solutions. Now it is time to adapt to a new real COVID-19 situation while not forgetting about our goals. NGIC was very quick and effective in response to this challenge. If you look at NGIC’s home page you can see a number of activities bringing together a vast number of former heads of states and international leaders. The active voice of these people was clearly heard in many headquarters of important international organizations. NGIC showed its viability and high level global networking,” said the former president.
He went on to add that COVID-19 pandemic is a great challenge to every nation around the world.
“Governments are trying to do their best to fight the virus. At the same time the situation emphasises how different the societies in different countries are. There is not a single solution that will fit everyone. At the same time we need a global approach to a global problem. We have to learn from the countries who have performed best. We need to understand the reasons for success and reasons for failures. And here we need global cooperation. It is not a race for who will develop the vaccine first. It's the question of how to make an effective, safe vaccine for every person's sake globally. It's the time for honest, trustful cooperation both regionally and globally.”
In conclusion, touching upon the bilateral ties between Latvia and Azerbaijan, Zatlers said the
relations between the two countries are very good and based on mutual trust and friendship.
“They show permanent political stability. Due to various reasons we have to focus more on regional problems and cooperation. Therefore the economic relations are not fully developed at the moment. But I am sure that in the near future the cooperation between our countries will expand. We have a good political basis for that,” he added.