"We were getting ready to bring this day closer. I have repeatedly said in my speeches that we should bring this day closer and closer every day. When we see that the norms and principles of international law are being flagrantly violated in the world, that the decisions and resolutions of leading international organizations are being ignored, that the occupying Armenian state is becoming more and more depraved and does not want to vacate our lands, of course, we had to prepare more seriously. These preparations had to be very careful. We approached these preparations within the framework of a single concept and defined it," said President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Ilham Aliyev at a meeting with a leadership and a group of military personnel of Azerbaijani Army on the occasion of the Armed Forces Day at Gulustan Palace.
Of course, the first Karabakh war was a great tragedy for us. It was a national tragedy. At the same time, it led to a major humanitarian catastrophe. Because at that time Azerbaijan had a population of eight million people, and one million of them had to live as refugees and internally displaced persons. Our economy was almost in complete ruins, there was no industrial potential, and there was no talk of economic development. This great humanitarian catastrophe, of course, put our country on the brink of a precipice.
The people of Azerbaijan wisely turned to Heydar Aliyev in those difficult days and invited him to take up power. After he came to power, things in Azerbaijan began to go in a positive direction. In particular, great reforms were carried out in the field of army building. It was in those years that the construction of a disciplined army began.