As you may know, Polish Foreign Minister, my close friend Witold Waszczykowski is on an official visit to Azerbaijan.
The relations between Azerbaijan and Poland have deep historical roots. Examples of Polish architectural traditions can be found in Baku today. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and Poland.
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan H.E Mr. Ilham Aliyev paid an official visit to Poland in June 2017. Within the framework of the visit, a Joint Declaration on strategic partnership was signed between Azerbaijan and Poland. Azerbaijan and Poland are successfully cooperating on a multilateral platform, including the European Union, NATO, the OSCE and the Visegrad Group.
Today, we discussed the current state and prospects of bilateral relations with my counterpart. Taking this opportunity, I would like to thank my Polish counterpart for the position on the Armenian-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. As noted in all political documents, Poland supports the resolution of the conflict within the principles of sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of internationally recognized borders.
Our discussions on bilateral economic relations mainly focused on energy security. An interesting exchange of views on transport corridors has taken place. During the visit of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan H.E Mr. Ilham Aliyev to Poland the new transport corridor, from Poland, the Baltic Sea Basin and Ukraine, to China was also discussed. Discussions on this issue are underway at various ministerial levels.
We exchanged views on the importance of expanding the legal-treaty framework between our countries, and now 41 documents have been signed and more than 10 documents are being reviewed between Azerbaijan and Poland.
In 2018, marks the 100th anniversary of the establishment of Polish settlements in Azerbaijan. In this regard, we agreed on the preperation of the Action Plan and approval of the Joint Action Plan.
We also look forward to the official visit of the Polish President to Azerbaijan in 2018.
Question:Malahat Najafova, APA: How do you assess the meeting of the Presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia in Geneva? Also, I would like to know your position regarding step out of Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan from the agreement one day after the meeting. My second question is related to the meeting of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs and foreign ministers. When and where will the meeting be planned?
Elmar Mammadyarov: Probably, you are aware of the text of the Joint Declaration after the meeting of the Presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia. We agreed on issuing the Declaration on 3 + 2 (3 Co-Chairs + 2 Foreign Ministers) format. The Armenian President's step out from the agreement is incorrect and irresponsible. At the Geneva meeting, the Presidents of the two countries held extensive discussions on the intensification of the negotiation process and the substantive negotiations. The Minsk Group co-chairs have made numerous proposals on ways to intensify negotiations. The main purpose of the meeting planned to be held at the level of foreign ministers is to conduct concrete and result-oriented discussions. The media will be informed after the identification of date and venue of the meeting.
From the Polish Public Radio: How Azerbaijan sees right now the idea of the Eastern Partnership, having in mind what has happened in Ukraine and strategic and geopolitical changes in Eastern neighborhood of Europe?
Elmar Mammadyarov: Thank you for your question. Azerbaijan is interested in strengthening cooperation with the European Union. I can tell you we are right now having a very intensive dialogue with the European Commission for the partnership agreement. We call it in Azerbaijan “strategic partnership agreement” because with 10 member states of the European Union we have the level of strategic partnership cooperation and appropriate agreements have been signed. We also initialized with 2 member states of the European Union the agreements of strategic importance. We believe that the partnership agreement with the EU will be of strategic nature. I can tell you that later this month delegation of the European Commission will visit Azerbaijan for very intensive discussions. We are right now negotiating Chapter 2, out of 3 chapters, devoted to trade. Of course, variety of issues has to be agreed between the European Commission and the Government of Azerbaijan. The most important is intention. Cooperation between Azerbaijan and the European Union is one of the foreign policy priorities for Azerbaijan. We believe that if we have already had of strategic importance cooperation in energy sphere, including construction of Trans Anatolian Gas Pipeline, Trans Adriatic Pipeline, delivering of natural gas from Azerbaijani sector of Caspian Sea to European markets, it is an issue of strategic importance for all the European Union member states. We are also introducing transport connectivity. Transport connectivity and connection of the East and West, North and South, with introducing Azerbaijan as one of the element of this connection, it is also an important element of cooperation between Azerbaijan and the EU. Tourism, agriculture, education are other significant elements for us in cooperation with the EU. We are ready to discuss all topics which is on the agenda of Azerbaijan-EU cooperation.
Full video of the joint press conference can be obtained from the following link.