By Sara Rajabova
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev received a delegation led by Stavros Lambrinidis, European Union Special Representative for Human Rights on February 24.
The sides expressed satisfaction with the development of relations between Azerbaijan and EU, and stressed the importance of expanding these ties in various areas, AzerTag reported.
The parties also exchanged views on the issues related to current state and prospects of cooperation in the fields of economy, energy, transport, human rights, democracy, etc.
Lambiridis visited Baku to discuss bilateral cooperation in the field of human rights. During his four-day visit, Lambiridis will hold several meetings with senior officials of Azerbaijan.
The EU and Azerbaijan are maintaining relations under the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, which was signed in 1996 and came into force in 1999.
Since then the PCA has provided the legal framework for EU-Azerbaijan bilateral relations in the areas of political dialogue, trade, investment, economic, legislative and cultural cooperation.
Azerbaijan is also included in the EU program on "Eastern Partnership" adopted on the initiative of Poland and Sweden and approved at the EU summit in Brussels in 2008.
The goal of the program is the rapprochement between the EU and Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Armenia, Moldova, Georgia, Belarus. The program envisages significant increase in the level of political interaction, large integration of former Soviet republics into EU economy, increasing the volume of financial aid to them and strengthening the energy security.