By Ghadeer Ghloum
KUWAIT: The Embassy of Azerbaijan held a conference to commemorate the 100th birthday of the national leader of Azerbaijan on May 15, 2023. During the conference, Azeri Ambassador Emil Karimov said May 10, 2023 marked the 100th birth anniversary of the national leader of Azerbaijan, Heydar Aliyev. Therefore, 2023 was named the “Year of Heydar Aliyev”, as declared by Azeri President Ilham Aliyev.
Karimov then gave a brief about Heydar Aliyev’s history — the year he was born, his education and positions he occupied, in addition to his achievements in developing Azerbaijan. Karimov said since the early days of his leadership, Heydar Aliyev renewed Azerbaijan’s foreign policy and rebuilt it on the basis of the country’s strategic interests. To ensure political and economic stability that would enable the country to develop, and as a result of negotiations conducted with the efforts of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and other mediators, the great leader reached a ceasefire agreement between Armenia and Azerbaijan in May 1994.
Moreover, Karimov said that in the busy life journey of Heydar Aliyev and in his achievements, his faithful and affectionate spouse Zarifa Aliyeva played a significant role. “This year, in April 2023, we celebrated the centenary of the birth of Mrs Zarifa Aziz gizi Aliyeva as well, who is a prominent scientist of Azerbaijan with a doctorate in medical sciences, a professor and full member of the Azerbaijan Academy of Sciences,” he said.
Karimov added she made several brilliant contributions to the field of medicine in Azerbaijan through comprehensive scientific activities. Her valuable articles, which she achieved as a result of her long-term scientific research on issues related to ophthalmic medicine, have always been highly appreciated and awarded. Her scientific services to the state and the people have been highly regarded and many medals and honorary titles have been granted to her. She has been awarded the honorary title of ‘Distinguished Scientist of Azerbaijan’.
Karimov concluded this ceremony is meant to commemorate the memory of both the national leader Heydar Aliyev and his loyal and prominent thinker wife Zarifa Aliyeva, in addition to wishing great success to their son, President Ilham Aliyev at his diligent work towards the prosperity of Azerbaijan. Former Kuwaiti MP Saleh Ashour highlighted the remarkable difference that Heydar Aliyev created by improving Azerbaijan.
Ashour said when he first visited Azerbaijan in 1992 after its liberation from the Soviet Union, it was a very simple country, as it lacked activities despite its rich nature, petroleum production and rich marine life, because it used to be managed by the Soviet Union. However, in a few years, Ashour said things have changes drastically at various levels — politically, socially, economically, educationally, etc due to Heydar Aliyev’s efforts and clear vision for the Azerbaijani people.
Turkish Ambassador Tuba Nur Sonmez said Aliyev was a great leader who devoted his life to his country and nation. He changed the face of Azerbaijan with development-oriented initiatives, international friendships and social reforms. Today, if Azerbaijan is a strong and stable state in the region, it undoubtedly owes this proud status to Heydar Aliyev’s visionary leadership. Sonmez then mentioned the strong relations between Turkey and Azerbaijan. “Heydar Aliyev, regarded Turkiye and Azerbaijan inseparable as flesh and nail. He was also the pioneer of the ‘two states, one nation’ motto that defines Turkish-Azerbaijani brotherhood.
In a similar manner, Ilham Aliyev, who was elected president after the passing of General Heydar Aliyev, followed the same path, attaching great importance to the Turkey-Azerbaijan brotherhood. And, thank God, our relations, which started on January 14, 1992, have reached the level of strategic alliance today. The Turkiye-Azerbaijan brotherhood model, which is getting stronger day by day under the leadership of our Presidents Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Ilham Aliyev, is a unique friendship model that the whole world watches with envy and respect,” she noted.