Baku. Ramiz MikayÄ±loghlu-APA. Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev made a speech during the meeting of Pope Francis with representatives of the Azerbaijani government, public and diplomatic corps at the Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku Oct. 2.
He noted that representatives of all religions and nations live in Azerbaijan in dignity.
Literacy, according to President Aliyev, is the main obstacle to radicalism and ignorance.
The literacy rate of the Azerbaijani population is close to 100 percent, headed.
“We strongly adhere to our national and moral values. At the same time, we are a modern country,” said the head of state.
“Unfortunately, Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts have been occupied as a result of Armenia’s military aggression against Azerbaijan in 1990,” said Ilham Aliyev. “A policy of ethnic cleansing was carried out against the Azerbaijani people. An act of genocide was committed in the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly.”
The president pointed out that ten countries have officially recognized the Khojaly genocide.
OSCE has sent fact-finding missions to the occupied lands twice and the report of these missions are horrifying, said the president. “All of our mosques and graves in the occupied territories have been destroyed by Armenia,” he added.
“We restored an Armenian church in Baku. Therefore, it is not accidental that Azerbaijan is known in the world as a center of multiculturalism,” said the president.
Ilham Aliyev stressed that the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict must be resolved within the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan.
“Our people greatly suffer from this conflict. Our population was 8 million in early 1990s and one million of them are refugees and IDPs,” he said.
“Nevertheless, Azerbaijan has passed a glorious path over the last 25 years. Several years ago, Azerbaijan was elected as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council,” the president added.