The Azerbaijani Embassy in Islamabad hosted an event on Monday to mark Remembrance Day to remember the fallen soldiers of second Karabakh war, also known as the Patriotic War.
Pakistan's Senate Chairman Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani, Deputy Chairman Mirza Muhammad Afridi, Turkey's Ambassador to Pakistan Mustafa Yurdakul, members of parliament, officials, and diplomats attended the ceremony in Pakistan's capital.
Azerbaijan is observing Sept. 27 as the Remembrance Day to mark the start of last year's conflict that ended with Baku regaining swaths of territory occupied by Armenia for nearly three decades.
In his speech on the occasion, Sanjrani paid tribute to the Azerbaijani soldiers who gave their lives for their motherland.
"Today, I also congratulate the government, ambassador, and people of Azerbaijan on their great victory against Armenia and the liberation of their land last year," he said.
The Senate chairman condemned Armenian war crimes against innocent Azerbaijanis, saying Pakistan stood by the Azerbaijani nation, and will always do so.
"We, along with Turkey, stood with Azerbaijan and supported their principled stance and Pakistan is ready to extend its support in reconstruction of newly liberated areas of Karabakh," Sanjrani said.
He also expressed gratitude to the Azerbaijani government for its support for Pakistan's stance on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.
In July last year, Armenian cease-fire violations killed 12 Azerbaijani troops – including high-ranking officers – and wounded four others, further angering Azerbaijan. One elderly Azerbaijani civilian was also killed.
On Sept. 21, 2020, clashes in the same region flared up again when a Azerbaijani army soldier was killed and another wounded.
During a subsequent 44-day conflict that ended with a Russian-brokered peace deal signed on Nov. 10, Azerbaijan liberated several cities and nearly 300 settlements and villages from Armenia's occupation.
"This is a big moment for our Azerbaijan brothers and sisters," Yurdakul said, referring to the victory of Azerbaijan against Armenia, whose military troops retreated in accordance with the cease-fire deal.
Azerbaijan declared that they would not accept the design of the others, the ambassador said, adding that they had this opportunity to employ their own legal and powerful armed forces and recapture the territory they had lost to the invasion for 30 years.
On the occasion, Azerbaijani Ambassador to Pakistan Khazar Farhadov commended Turkey and Pakistan for supporting their principled position and standing with them in the Patriotic War.
"The Patriotic War put an end to Armenia's nearly 30-year-long policy of aggression. Azerbaijan ensured its territorial integrity, and the fundamental rights of nearly one million displaced Azerbaijanis were restored. Azerbaijan alone ensured the implementation of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions of 1993," he said.
He explained that last year, the Azerbaijani armed forces began taking responsive measures in response to another military provocation by the Armenian military.
"These measures were undertaken within the framework of the right to self-defense. They were in full compliance with the international humanitarian law in order to prevent another military aggression from Armenia and to ensure the security of the civilian population. This marked the beginning of the 44-day Patriotic War," the envoy said.
Since the early 1990s, he said, four UN Security Council resolutions and two UN General Assembly resolutions, as well as many international organizations, have demanded the "immediate, complete, and unconditional withdrawal of the occupying forces from the occupied Azerbaijani territory."
Prior to Azerbaijan's victory last year, about 20% of its territory had been illegally occupied for nearly 30 years.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.