Azerbaijan keeps silence after Ukrainian president expresses countries' mutual support for territorial integrity
During his visit to Baku, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked Azerbaijan “for recognizing and supporting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.”
Azerbaijani President Aliyev did not comment on the statement.
The meeting of the Presidents of Ukraine and Azerbaijan took place in Baku on December 17. This is the first official visit of Volodymyr Zelensky to Baku since his election as president.
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Results of the meeting
“We want to express gratitude to Azerbaijan for the recognition and support of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. I request you to know that we also support the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Azerbaijan”, president.az website quoted Zelensky as saying during his one-on-one with Aliyev.
At the same time, Aliyev did not say anything about the territorial integrity of Ukraine (that is, about the Crimea and Donbass). At least in open sources there are no such statements.
The parties agreed that Kyiv will support the Azerbaijani state oil company SOCAR in its work on the Ukrainian oil market and will support the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzrum gas pipeline project.
In addition, according to Zelensky, Ukraine and Azerbaijan intend to intensify mutual aviation, road and rail connections and are interested in implementing projects in the space industry and aviation.
“Shared tragedy” or “He was right to say nothing”
Zelensky arrived in Azerbaijan on the invitation of Ilham Aliyev. But on the eve of this meeting, the head of the Atlas research center, political scientist Elkhan Shahinoglu tried to draw the attention of the public to the fact that Azerbaijan was the first country in the South Caucasus that the Ukrainian president visited.
From the point of view of Shahinoglu, this is no accident:
“There are several reasons for this. Firstly, trade and economic relations between Ukraine and Azerbaijan are more active than with Georgia and Armenia. Azerbaijan and Ukraine are also united by a common misfortune. There is no significant difference between the problems of Nagorno-Karabakh and Donbass.”
After the meeting of the presidents, many users of social networks drew attention to the fact that Ilham Aliyev did not openly declare that Crimea and Donbass were occupied by Russia. Others considered that he should not have done this, since Azerbaijan signed a UN General Assembly resolution recognizing the territorial integrity of Ukraine, and this is quite enough, and a loud statement of this kind can ruin Azerbaijan’s relations with Russia.
“If Azerbaijan is silent about Crimea and Donbass, then let it not be offended if other countries are silent about Karabakh”
“Official Baku in all documents recognizes Crimea as the territory of Ukraine. What other statements could it make?”
“To declare Russia’s occupation of Crimea and Donbass means stepping on the tail of a living and not very polite dragon under the warm belly of which we live.”