Zangazur corridor to create new opportunities for region, President Ilham Aliyev says
"As we have left the conflict behind, large-scale construction work is carried out in the liberated territories. Azerbaijan is building new cities and towns from the scratch by applying the modern urban planning and utilizing the concepts of 'smart city' and 'smart village'," President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said speaking at the 76th session of the UN General Assembly in a format of a video address, SİA informs.
The head of state added that all this work is being conducted with Azerbaijan’s own financial resources, noting that to that end, $1.3 billion has been allocated from the state budget only this year.
"However, the main challenge is the vast presence of landmines planted by Armenia in the liberated territories. Since the signing of the capitulation act by Armenia on 10 November 2020, around 30 Azerbaijani citizens, including 2 journalists were killed and around 130 citizens were wounded. Azerbaijan is among the most heavily mined countries in the world. It slows down the reconstruction process in the liberated territories and return of internally displaced persons to their homes.
"Armenia refuses to release accurate maps of minefields. The accuracy level of the maps for three regions which Armenia had to provide is only 25 percent. The international community must force Armenia to provide us with accurate mine maps of all liberated territories.
"As the conflict is over, Azerbaijan has already announced its readiness to embark upon the border delimitation and demarcation between Azerbaijan and Armenia, and to start negotiations on peace agreement with Armenia, based on mutual recognition of sovereignty and territorial integrity of each other. Such an agreement would turn our region into the region of peace and cooperation. However, we have not yet seen any positive reaction from Armenia regarding our proposal.
"One of the areas that can serve as the cause of peace and cooperation is transportation projects. In this context, the Zangazur corridor connecting mainland Azerbaijan with its inseparable part Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic and Turkey will create new opportunities for our region.
"Azerbaijan has created a new reality in the Southern Caucasus region which has to be taken into account by all. Armenia has to make a choice between regional cooperation and illegal and baseless territorial claims against its neighbors. The international community should also play its positive role in this regard and urge Armenia to realize that peace has no alternative. Any acts directly or indirectly supporting revanchism and militarization in Armenia must be ceased.
"We hope that long-awaited peace, security and stability will prevail in the Southern Caucuses, at last. Azerbaijan will continue its consistent efforts to contribute and to strengthen regional peace and development," the head of state said.
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