By Vugar Khalilov
The joint Azerbaijani-Turkish joint drills - Indestructible Brotherhood - 2021 have kicked off in Azerbaijan’s Nakhchivan exclave, the Defence Ministry reported on September 20.
The motorized rifle units, special forces and other types of troops of the Azerbaijani and Turkish armies are involved in the exercises under the military cooperation agreement between the two countries, the report added.
The drills started with the exchange of state flags between the units of the Nakhchivan garrison and the Turkish armed forces.
The banner platoons of the Azerbaijani and Turkish armies marched respectively from Nakhchivan and Turkey’s Dogu Bayazid cities towards the Sadarak border checkpoint to participate in the flag-exchanging ceremony on the Umid Bridge over the Araz River.
The flag-exchanging ceremony took place following the performance of the national anthems of the two countries.
After the ceremony, the Turkish military convoy headed to the drill ground and the military units of the Nakhchivan’s Separate Combined Arms Army greeted the guests there, the ministry said.
Military cooperation between Azerbaijan and Turkey first emerged in 1992, with an agreement signed between the Azerbaijani and Turkish governments on military education and weapon equipment and deals to help strengthen the bond between the two nations.
On June 15, the two countries signed a memorandum of alliance that cemented the existing military, political and economic cooperation.
The Shusha Declaration on Allied Relations that President Ilham Aliyev and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan signed during the first official visit to Shusha eight months after Azerbaijan’s victory in the war with Armenia, also focuses on defence cooperation.
It affirms joint efforts by the two armies in the face of foreign threats. The declaration also pledges joint efforts for the restructuring and modernization of the armed forces. Moreover, the two nations affirm to encourage the execution of joint projects with the aim of developing capabilities in the field of sea, air, and space.
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