Parliament Speaker: Azerbaijan interested in cooperation with ECO member states [PHOTO]
Azerbaijan is interested in developing bilateral and multilateral cooperation with the member countries of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO), Azerbaijani Parliament Speaker Sahiba Gafarova has said.
She made the remarks at the 3rd General Conference of the Parliamentary Assembly (PA) of the ECO in Baku.
"In this regard, we, as representatives of our peoples, have a special responsibility. The PA ECO not only supports the implementation of the organization's goals but also helps to enhance ties between the parliaments of our countries, thus bringing peoples closer," Gafarova opined.
Noting that Azerbaijan considers ECO as an important regional organization, she stressed that the parliament attaches considerable importance to its activities within the PA ECO.
The speaker urged other ECO Parliaments to sign and ratify the PA Charter, stressing that she believes this step will promote further expansion of ties between the member states.
"The ratification of the PA Charter can serve as an example,” she noted.
Furthermore, Gafarova stressed the relevance of the topic of the 3rd Conference of the PA ECO.
"The COVID-19 pandemic has created serious challenges that affected the global economy, healthcare, and all areas of public life. As the world community was not prepared for these challenges, finding a way out of the crisis took a while. Amid the coronavirus-related problems, it was necessary to make great efforts in the fight against the pandemic," she added.
Later, the speaker added that Azerbaijan has put forward a number of successful global initiatives on this occasion.
“At the initiative of the Azerbaijani president, Chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement, Ilham Aliyev, the UN General Assembly held a special session in response to the coronavirus disease pandemic in December 2020, the Human Rights Council and the UN General Assembly adopted resolutions on ensuring equitable, affordable, timely and universal access for all countries to vaccines in March and December 2021. On the other hand, Azerbaijan provided financial and humanitarian assistance to the worst-affected countries by pandemic, as well as donated COVID-19 vaccines to them," Gafarova said.
Gafarova expressed the interest of Azerbaijan in furthering the bilateral and multilateral ties with Iran.
The remarks were made during a meeting with Deputy Chairman of the Iranian Majles Ali Nikzad, who was on a visit to Baku on May 17.
Noting the substantial role of the legislative assemblies in the evolution of the bi-partite relations, Gafarova pointed out that each of the assemblies had a working group in action and that both those groups were bridging the Azerbaijani and Iranian legislatures.
“Our two countries are bound together with friendship and good neighborhood,” Gafarova added.
Deputy Chairman of the Islamic Consultative Assembly Ali Nikzad said that he was glad to be in the friendly neighboring country, and offered his gratitude for the high standards in the organization and conduct of the Third General Conference of the PA ECO.
Further, the Azerbaijani speaker updated the Iranian official on the new state of affairs and the new realities present in the region following Azerbaijan’s victory in the 44-day Patriotic War. She noted that once the conflict was over, Azerbaijan launched extensive work aiming at restoring and rebuilding its own lands liberated from the Armenian occupation.
Nikzad opined that the de-occupied territories of Azerbaijan will soon be rebuilt and reconstructed to open the way for the IDPs back to their native lands as soon as possible.
Both sides underscored with satisfaction the Azerbaijani speaker’s visit to Iran last year and the meetings she had there. Nikzad noted that the advancement of the inter-parliamentary connections served the common goals.
Azerbaijan intends to intensify its relations with Tajikistan in diverse areas, Gafarova stated during a meeting with the visiting Chairman of the Tajik Assembly of Representatives of the Supreme Assembly on May 17.
Mentioning the ancient history of the Azerbaijani-Tajik friendship, the Azerbaijani speaker noted that the proximity of the cultural pillars of the Azerbaijani and Tajik peoples guarantees that their relations will go on progressing.
Further, the speaker noted the fine opportunities to continue broadening the bilateral economic, cultural and humanitarian cooperation, and stressed that high-profile visits from both states and the bilateral documents signed to date are making for an increasingly stronger foundation for the ongoing two-way interstate relations.
In turn, Zokirzoda thanked his counterpart Gafarova for the cordial reception given to him and for the invitation to take part in the PA ECO Third General Conference. He also expressed his appreciation of the hospitality and the high-level arrangement of the event in question.
Tajikistan wishes to expand not only political but also economic, cultural, and humanitarian ties and collaboration with Azerbaijan whilst the progress of the inter-parliamentary links can prove helpful in achieving that goal, Zokirzoda stated.
“Therefore, it is highly commendable that our delegations are engaged in the work of influential international entities and that the two sides exchange visits,” the chairman added.
Later, the sides discussed the current state and the growth prospects of the inter-parliamentary connections and other matters of mutual interest.
In the meantime, the trip of the participants in the PA ECO meeting to Shusha has begun.
The guests first got acquainted with Fuzuli International Airport and then left for Shusha. They will also get acquainted with the restoration and construction work carried out in Shusha, as well as visit the Shusha fortress, Shusha City Square, Khan gizi Khurshidbanu Natavan’s house, Jidir Duzu Plain, and the Vagif mausoleum.
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