Speech of Heydar Aliyev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, at the meeting held with Mr. Javier Solana, NATO Secretary General - New-York, July 27, 1997

Dear Mr. Solana!

I express you my gratitude for the sincere words you applied to the Republic of Azerbaijan and to me personally. I would like to inform you that being a distinguished political figure you are well known in Azerbaijan, your visit to Azerbaijan is still considered as an important event and the NATO-Azerbaijan relationships established not long ago and strengthening steadily in the course of the last years is being related with your name. It is with a great pleasure that I want to stress the special role of the personal friendship relationships established between us in this matter.

Alongside with this I would like to state that results of Summit of Heads of the NATO and Council of Euro-Atlantic Cooperation member - countries held in Madrid on 8-9 July would play an important role in resolution of numerous global problems and strengthening of cooperation of our country with different bodies of this international organization.

I assure you that the independence of our country is eternal and steadfast. Permanent stabilization of socio-political situation in our country and support provided by our people to this process appears to be one of the most important indicators of consolidation of our independence. All this enables us to take more serious steps towards settlement of the most painful problem of ours - the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict,- in a peaceful way, and solve the problem of territorial integrity of our country.

The statement signed in Denver by the Presidents of the 3 co-chairing countries of OSCE Minsk Group - Mr. Bill Clinton, Mr. Boris Yeltsin and Mr. Jacques Chiraque, - pleases us a lot and highlights the increase of efforts undertaken by co-chairing countries in this sphere. I do hope that the military conflict will be ended in 1997; I will discuss it largely with Mr. Bill Clinton during the meeting with him at the White House.

Dear Mr. Solana, I invite you once again to visit Azerbaijan. I hope that your visit will promote strengthening of NATO-Azerbaijan cooperation. Thank you.