To the Prime Minister of Japan His Majesty Mr. Keidzo Obuchi - Baku , October, 22, 1999

Your Majesty!

First of all let me congratulate You on being re-elected as a chairman of Liberal-Democratic Party, as well as the Prime Minister of Japan. At the same time, taking advantage of this opportunity I would like to express my gratitude for your friendly and sincere letter that serves to an exceptionally close relations between our countries.

We accept the decision of your government to function Japanese Embassy in Baku in January of 2000 as the guarantee of keeping bilateral relations on a high level and regard this news as glad tidings. I consider it necessary to note that diplomatic activity of Japan in "Silk Way" region on a high level is a guarantee of development of "Restoration of Historical Silk Way" project. We highly appreciate The visit of "Friendship" delegation at the initiative of and headed by a member of the House of Representatives of Japanese Parliament Mr T.Nakayama, which is one of the important visits, made by Japan to our region at different levels we highly appreciate as the next step of Japan in "Silk way" diplomacy. The inclusion of members the Japanese Parliament, representatives of governmental bodies and leading companies of the private sector gives opportunity to express confidence that this visit is as highly productive as possible.

I express my gratitude to the humanitarian and technical aid provided to our country in the period when we regained our independence and were in need of assistance for eradicating the difficulties, caused by the occupation of 20 percent of our territory by Armenian armed forces and resulted in the presence of more than one million refugees in the country. I highly value the active and constantly grooving allocation of credits and investments made by the Japanese government and companies, necessary to create powerful economy, as one of the major conditions for our strong nationhood as well as the peculiar activity of Japanese side in oil contracts. I assure you that we will do our best to expand Japanese-Azerbaijani economic cooperation.

Your Majesty, as regards our cooperation within the framework of international organizations, once more I would like to confirm with great respect that on the basis of constant strengthening of our cooperation and considering very important mission carried out by Japan within the framework of UNO, we advocate Japan geting elected a permanent member of the Security Council.

As it has been noticed in your letter, I remember my visit to Japan and especially the meeting with you very well. I believe that our private dialogue will continue hereinafter too. I also thank you for your consideration and care expressed about my health and would like to inform you, that at present my health allows me to work with all my might on the way to the state building of the Azerbaijan Republic that has newly regained its independence.

In conclusion I emphasize, that I highly value your efforts made for the development of relations between our countries, and as an important step to be taken in this direction, I invite You to visit Azerbaijan at Your convenient time.

I wish Your Majesty good health, great success in your work and constant progress to Japan on the way of development.

Sincerely Yours,

Heydar Aliyev,

The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan