Azerbaijan, with a population of 10.11 million approximately, a sovereign nation and former Soviet republic, is bounded by the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains, which span Asia and Europe. It is rich in oil and gas and blessed with an abundance of natural resources.
Pakistan was the second country to recognize Azerbaijan – on December 12, 1991, after Turkey. Trade and cooperation have steadily grown between the two nations, with several summits being held on how to improve trade between the two nations. Azerbaijan and Pakistan “enjoy strategic partnership relations”, according to officials of both countries said in March 2013. The leadership of both countries has strengthened the bilateral relations with mutual visits.
Cooperation and collaboration between two brotherly nations are covering all aspects, including, economic, trade, defense, culture, etc. Historic linkages go back centuries, with common religion and traditions. Pure friendship and love between the people of Azerbaijan and Pakistan are characteristic of our modern relations. Both countries support each other on all domestic, regional, and international issues. Political and diplomatic support strengthens the common interests of both nations at all forums, including the UN structures.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in collaboration with the Embassy of Azerbaijan in Islamabad, organized a special event and a photo exhibition at the Foreign Office to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and Azerbaijan.
Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood and Ambassador Khazar Farhadov of Azerbaijan formally inaugurated the exhibition. The photographs on display had been carefully curated to showcase the rich history of leadership-level engagement between the two countries as well as important milestones in the bilateral relationship.
Speaking on the occasion, the Foreign Secretary said that Pakistan-Azerbaijan relations had evolved into a robust and multi-dimensional partnership since the formal establishment of bilateral ties in 1992. He highlighted that the two countries had a long-standing tradition of supporting each other on their issues of core interest.
The Foreign Secretary recalled Pakistan’s support for Azerbaijan’s position on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue. He appreciated Azerbaijan’s principled stance on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, noting that Azerbaijan had been a consistent advocate for the rights of the Kashmiri people as a member of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir.
While expressing satisfaction with the state of bilateral relations, the Foreign Secretary reiterated Pakistan’s resolve to further strengthen and diversify its cooperation with Azerbaijan, particularly in the economic, trade, and cultural domains.
Ambassadors and senior diplomats from the Central Asian states as well as Turkey participated in the event. Members of the media and representatives from the Multicultural Center of Azerbaijan, which has recently been established at the National University of Modern Languages (NUML), were also in attendance.
Despite excellent relations, the potential for expansion in bilateral relations is huge. Azerbaijan and Pakistan can complement each other’s, and the strengths of each other can complement each other’s weaknesses. It is desired that the people-to-people contacts may be enhanced to promote understanding and harmony between two brotherly states. Tourism, education, and health sectors need to enhance cooperation. Pakistan can support Azerbaijan in Science, technology, education, and defense sectors, whereas, Azerbaijan can support Pakistan to meet its energy requirements.
It is suggested to ease visa facilities and open-air linkages between the two countries. With the enhanced interaction, the opportunities for cooperation will be enhanced ultimately. Both nations are peace-loving and are committed to promoting peace, stability, and developments in the region as well as globally.