By Vafa Ismayilova
Azerbaijan, Turkey and Pakistan signed a joint declaration on January 13 following the trilateral meeting of the three countries’ foreign ministers in Pakistan on January 13.
Under the signed Islamabad Declaration, the three countries are set to deepen further cooperation built on outcome of the first trilateral meeting held in Baku on 30 November 2017, in all areas of mutual interest, including political, strategic, trade, economic, peace and security, science and technology and cultural fields.
The document noted the significant contributions by Pakistan, Turkey and Azerbaijan to the promotion of peace, stability and development in their respective regions and the mutual desire of their peoples to further advance these ideals for shared prosperity and security in the broader region. The sides also expressed serious concerns on the grave human rights violations and crimes against humanity committed against the Muslim communities in various parts of the world.
They underlined the myriad challenges and emerging threats confronting their countries including but not limited to threats of foreign-sponsored acts of terrorism, cyber-attacks, hybrid forms of warfare, targeted disinformation campaigns, and escalating trends of Islamophobia affecting the peaceful co-existence of Muslim communities in many countries. In the declaration, Pakistan and Turkey expressed solidarity with the Azerbaijani government and nation in their efforts to rebuild and rehabilitate liberated territories.
The sides reaffirmed the commitment towards developing regional consensus for peace and development. They also reiterated their strong and unequivocal support for safeguarding and defending the sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of international borders of their respective states. The declaration noted that the three foreign ministers agreed to enhance joint efforts on combating Islamophobia, discrimination and persecution of Muslim minorities, in particular at the regional and international fora.
They reiterated support for putting an end to the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict and normalization of relations on the basis of sovereignty and territorial integrity and internationally recognized borders of Azerbaijan in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. The sides also renewed their resolve to strengthen cooperation in peace and security in line with various international and regional instruments to combat all forms and manifestations of terrorism, transnational organized crime, trafficking of drugs, narcotics, trafficking in persons, money laundering, crimes against cultural and historical heritage and cybercrimes.
They also expressed commitment to promoting cooperation in defence and security fields, including through sharing best practices, capacity building, new and emerging technologies and regular exchange of visits.
Under the declaration, Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Turkey expressed determination to enhance cooperation on regional connectivity in transport, trade, energy, people-to-people contacts, education, social and cultural exchange, tourism, and ICT, including through improving and strengthening air, rail and road links and regional connectivity initiatives at various regional fora. They underlined the need to intensify cooperation for food and energy security, environment, sustainable development and climate change and called for greater international cooperation for timely response and achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.
The Islamabad Declaration contains a wide range of other issues within the interests of the three countries.
The three ministers agreed to regularly convene the trilateral meetings on annual basis in alphabetical order and also agreed to hold the third session of the trilateral meetings in Turkey on mutually agreed dates in 2022.
As part of his official visit to Pakistan on January 13, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov had discussed further cooperation in a range of spheres with his Pakistani and Turkish counterparts in Islamabad.
At their meeting on January 13, Pakistani Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Jeyhun Bayramov exchanged views on bilateral cooperation, which is developing on the basis of friendship and brotherhood, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry reported.
Qureshi congratulated Bayramov on the liberation of Azerbaijani lands from Armenia's illegal occupation and said that Pakistan has always supported Azerbaijan's just position. He said the trilateral meeting in Islamabad was a clear example of the determination of the two countries to further develop cooperation in the region.
Minister Bayramov noted with satisfaction the friendly Pakistani government's and people's resolute support to Azerbaijan's position based on international law. He thanked Pakistan for demonstrating this principled position unambiguously during the Patriotic War with Armenia. Bayramov also thanked the Pakistani Foreign Ministry for successfully hosting the second meeting of the Azerbaijani, Pakistani and Turkish foreign ministers in Islamabad.
The ministers also discussed many aspects of bilateral relations, including expanding cooperation in trade, agriculture, energy and transport, as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest, the report added.
Bayramov also met his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu as part of his official visit to Pakistan, the ministry reported on its official Facebook page.
The ministers discussed the current regional situation, the implementation of the joint statement dated November 10, 2020, as well as the implementation of the trilateral statement signed on January 11, 2021, in Moscow.
The sides also exchanged views on issues on the bilateral cooperation agenda, as well as cooperation within international organizations. Other regional issues of mutual interest were also discussed during the meeting, the report added.
The ministry also reposted on its page Cavusoglu's statement that he shared on his Facebook page.
Commenting on his meeting with Bayramov, Cavusoglu said that they discussed the latest developments in Nagorno-Karabakh.
"We will continue to support our Azerbaijani brothers and sisters in building peace," Cavusogu said.
Pakistani-Turkish support to Azerbaijan
At a news conference given after a trilateral meeting of the Pakistani, Turkish and Azerbaijani foreign ministers in Islamabad on January 13, Bayramov described Pakistan's and Turkey's positions during the Second Nagorno-Karabakh War as extremely important for Azerbaijan, Trend reported.
He thanked Pakistan and Turkey for the support they rendered to Azerbaijan during the war.
“Turkey and Pakistan condemned Armenia’s attacks and war crimes against Azerbaijan, guided by the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity, and supported Azerbaijan,” Bayramov added.
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