Books on Azerbaijan
Update No: 353 -
Azerbaijan and Turkey are incredibly
important partners in the Turkic-speaking
world. Amongst other things, they sit
astride the junction of the Caucasus and
the Middle East, the natural conduit of
oil and gas from east to west.
Their leaders have said that they will
sign a deal on Azerbaijani natural gas
exports to Turkey during President Ilham
Aliyev's visit to Ankara on June 7-8, a
crucial event on the Middle Eastern
Azerbaijani officials said earlier the
agreement regulating the amount and price
of the exports would be signed in mid-May
during Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip
Erdogan's visit to Baku. At a press
conference with Erdogan following their
talks, indeed, Aliyev said the agreement
is ready to be signed.
Wider issues also to the fore
Erdogan said the two leaders also
agreed on establishing a Strategic
Partnership Council. He added that it will
also be signed when Aliyev visits Ankara.
Erdogan said Aliyev updated him on the
state of the Nagorno-Karabakh peace
process. Aliyev said Azerbaijan has
accepted -- with minor exceptions -- the
updated peace proposal from the
Organization for Security and Cooperation
in Europe's Minsk Group, and expects
Armenia to do the same.
He said if Armenia withdraws from the
Azerbaijani territory that it occupies,
then Baku will open its border and
establish relations with Armenia. During
his one-day visit to Baku, Erdogan
inaugurated a monument to Turkey's first
president, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
Economy on the rebound
The economy is picking up at last, after
suffering terribly in the world slump. GDP
is growing 5.5% this year, including in
the all-important non-oil sector.
The Azeris are perhaps going to have a new