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Azerbaijan-Lithuania relations in focus of Baku talks (UPDATE)

7 March 2013 14:09 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijan-Lithuania relations in focus of Baku talks (UPDATE)

By Aynur Jafarova

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev received a delegation led by Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius on Wednesday, Azertac state news agency reported.

The Lithuanian minister conveyed greetings of European Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle to the Azerbaijani President.

During the meeting, they praised development of bilateral relations between Azerbaijan and Lithuania.

They also discussed Azerbaijan`s cooperation within EU Eastern Partnership Programme.

President Aliyev asked Linas Linkevičius to pass on his greetings to European Commissioner Štefan Füle.

During his familiarization visit to Baku, the Lithuanian minister also held a number of meetings with the senior Azerbaijani officials and discussed the development of the Azerbaijan-Lithuania and Azerbaijani-EU relations.

Linkevičius held a meeting with his Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov, who appreciated the Lituanian officials' visit to Azerbaijan.

The minister stressed the successful development of relations between the two countries in all areas and expressed confidence that visit of Linkevičius to Azerbaijan will be an impetus for further cooperation.

Mammadyarov informed Linkevičius about the work carried out in many areas including ICT and tourism and spoke about the achieved progress.

Touching on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict, Mammadyarov said that it is impossible to change the internationally recognized borders by using force in the 21st century. He stressed the need for unconditional implementation of the decisions and resolutions adopted by the UN Security Council and other international organizations.

Linkevičius, in turn, expressed satisfaction with the visit to Azerbaijan and the meetings held here. He stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation with Azerbaijan within the Eastern Partnership program, adding that Lithuania is interested in cooperation with Azerbaijan in many fields. Linkevičius appreciated Azerbaijan's role in ensuring EU energy security.

Azerbaijani Defense Minister, colonel-general Safar Abiyev also received the Lithuanian minister.

The sides discussed the development and strengthening of relations and military cooperation between the two countries.

The meeting was also attended by the Azerbaijani ambassador to Lithuania and Lithuanian ambassador to Azerbaijan.

Linkevičius began his visit to the South Caucasus region from Georgia where he met with President Mikheil Saakashvili and Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili on Tuesday. He is further expected to visit Armenia.

The regional visit aimed at discussing Lithuania's bilateral relations with Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia, the relations of these countries with the EU and presenting plans and priorities of Lithuania's upcoming chairmanship of the EU in the second half of the year.

Vilnius is to host the Eastern Partnership Summit in November during the Lithuanian chairmanship. The summit will involve representatives of all the three countries of the South Caucasus, actively cooperating with the EU within the Eastern Partnership program.

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