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Turkey congratulates Azerbaijan on Independence Day

Pakistani premier also voices solidarity amid Upper Karabakh tension

Jeyhun Aliyev and Sena Guler  | 18.10.2020 - Update : 19.10.2020
Turkey congratulates Azerbaijan on Independence Day


Turkey on Sunday congratulated "brotherly and dear" Azerbaijan on the occasion of its 29th Independence Day.

“I congratulate our dear brother, dear friend Azerbaijan on Oct. 18 Independence Day,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Twitter.

He said Ankara will continue to support Baku in every field, and stand by the “brotherly nation” in their fight for homeland.

The Turkish Defense Ministry also released a separate message of solidarity. 

"We are with you as your brothers in your operation to liberate Upper Karabakh from Armenian occupation, and we will always be with you. As one nation, two states, we will stand [by each other] forever!" Turkey's Defense Ministry also said on Twitter. "We believe that next year we will celebrate your independence day with victory applause and more enthusiasm."

Pakistan stands with Azerbaijan

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan also felicitated Azerbaijan.

“I extend warmest felicitations to @presidentaz & fraternal people of #Azerbaijan on their Independence Day. We pay tribute to Azeri forces valiantly defending their territorial integrity,” he tweeted. “Pakistan stands with Azerbaijan in its quest to resolve Nagorno-Karabakh issue as per UNSC resolutions."

Azerbaijan declared independence not once but twice in the 20th century -- in 1918, with the fall of the Russian Czarist regime, and regained independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Today, it is marking the day with both pride and sorrow, as it comes amid deadly Armenian attacks in the wake of a longstanding dispute in Upper Karabakh.

Relations between the two former Soviet republics have been tense since the early 1990s when the Armenian military occupied Upper Karabakh, or Nagorno-Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan.

Fresh clashes erupted on Sept. 27, and Armenia has since continued its attacks on civilians and Azerbaijani forces, even violating humanitarian cease-fire agreements.

The second cease-fire went into effect Saturday midnight (2000GMT). It was reached between Baku and Yerevan after the Oct. 10 truce – meant to allow an exchange of prisoners and the recovery of bodies – was breached hours later by Armenian missile attacks on Azerbaijan's city of Ganja.

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