By Sara Rajabova
Commander of the U.S. Transportation Command, General William Fraser, who heads a U.S. delegation visiting Azerbaijan, said he has witnessed the development of aviation in the country.
While visiting the National Aviation Academy, he expressed appreciation for Azerbaijan's support to the U.S. and the international community, particularly to the U.S. Transportation Command.
"You are true friends, and we appreciate highly the work you have done," Fraser said, regarding Azerbaijan as a strong and valuable partner for the U.S.
Fraser said the US-Azerbaijani relations are based on supporting democratic development, security, energy, trade and other fields.
He also spoke about the importance of communication and reliable links to ensure the safety of the aviation industry.
"I am proud of the joint celebration of the 75th anniversary of the first aviation group of Azerbaijan, established on June 2, 1938," Fraser said.
The senior US official went on to say that currently civil aviation is a growing sector in Azerbaijan, pointing out the construction of new international airports and the purchase of modern aircraft in recent years.
He voiced confidence that today's students will mark a glorious page in the modern history of Azerbaijan.
The US delegation later got acquainted with the National Aviation Academy. The delegation also visited the National Museum of Aviation in Azerbaijan operating under the aviation academy.
During the visit, the delegation also got acquainted with a fitness center at the academy. The facility, earmarked for the training of local and foreign flight crews, has simulators of Airbus-320, Boeing-757 and Boeing-767 airliners, as well as ATR-72 and MI-171 helicopters.
During the day five flight crews may exercise at the gym.
The visitors were provided with information about the system of control over the flight indicators, as well as the learning process taking place there.
Earlier, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev received the delegation led by the US Transportation Command chief.
Also, Azerbaijani-U.S. relations were discussed during Fraser's meeting with Defense Minister Safar Abiyev.
They discussed the cooperation between Azerbaijan and the U.S., the situation in the region and issues of security.
Also, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov received the U.S. delegation. During the meeting, the parties welcomed the current state of cooperation in various areas, including the military and transportation, discussed ways to further develop bilateral relations and exchanged views on opportunities to use regional transport corridors crossing Azerbaijan, as well as the NATO troops' withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2014.