Dialogue between the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev and the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of France Republic Renaud Muselier while receiving the French delegation - Presidential Palace, October 1, 2002

Renaud Muselier: France always supports Azerbaijan, we are friendly countries, we have very close relations and terms.

Heydar Aliyev: There are very close and friendly relations and cooperation between Azerbaijan and France. We appreciate these relations and make efforts to strengthen them. I hope that all these visits and meetings are of great importance for developing our relations.

Recently, together with the representatives of OSCE Member States - France, the USA and Russia, we discussed the ways of peaceful settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. But with you we conduct negotiations on developing the French - Azerbaijani relations in larger scales.

Renaud Muselier: Mr. President, we express our thanks to you for receiving our delegation. I mean my visit to Azerbaijan is the first official visit in my new position. From this point of view I am too happy to be here today. President of the French Republic Mr. Jacque Chirac sends you his friendly greetings. My visit to your country is at the same time his wish. Mr. J.Chirac supports all your efforts and respects to you very much. And therefore today I am in a very significant country, Azerbaijan, a very important country.

Heydar Aliyev: I express my thanks to you for giving President Jacque Chirac`s greetings and for bringing his letter.

I am оn good friendly terms with President Jacque Chirac. I think highly of our friendship. Because, these relations have a great role in developing the French-Azerbaijani cooperation. We had several meetings with Mr. Jacque Chirac both in Paris and in other international organizations and conducted very significant, detailed talks. I would like to express my gratitude to Mr. President for his attention, regard for the problems of Azerbaijan, especially for his efforts in the peaceful settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict.

It`s gladdening that correspondence between us has an important role in our relations. You have handed to me Mr. President`s letter. Of course, I shall read it attentively and respond to the letter. We also get in touch by telephone. I express my gratitudes once again and ask you to get my best wishes and regards to President Jacque Chirac.

As regards the problem of struggle against the international terrorism, when the terror acts were committed in New York on September 11, our government immediately stated that we join the alliance against international terrorism and we are active members of this coalition. During this period we did everything as a part of our responsibility. Terrorism, especially international terrorism is the greatest danger to the whole world today. We have already experienced this and suffered from terrorism. It should be noted that while Armenia and Azerbaijan were at war, Armenia committed numerous terror acts against Azerbaijan. In 1993-1994 terror acts were committed in Baku metro by the agents of Armenia and it led to great human losses. In those years besides the aggression, Armenia also committed 32 terror acts against to Azerbaijan. Therefore we are against to all kinds of terrorism and we are ready to join our efforts with you and other members of the alliance.

We want the peaceful settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict in spite of all injustices committed against Azerbaijan. The OSCE Minsk group and its co-chairs- Russia the USA and France have an important role in the settlement of this conflict. Our direct meetings, negotiations also are of great importance.

Twenty percent of the Azerbaijani lands have been occupied, more than one million of our compatriots have become refugees and the majority of them still live in tents. Nevertheless, we are for the peaceful settlement of this conflict. President Jacque Chirac has rendered great services to this problem and I hope that he will continue his efforts in future. In Paris the Azerbaijani and Armenian Presidents conducted negotiations with the participation of President Jacque Chirac. During these negotiations I witnessed that President Jacque Chirac took a fair position in the settlement of conflict. Therefore, I hope our cooperation will continue in future.

Renaud Muselier: I think that the death of innocent people as a result of terror acts is intolerable. Your country is of great importance for France. The French are very attentive towards Azerbaijan.

It should be noted that there is stability in Azerbaijan. It`s very important for other countries. It`s well known that you have performed great services for your country. You know people well. Your wisdom, your awareness of the processes ongoing in the Caucasus and ability to understand people help you. I hope that all these abilities will also help you to find a solution to the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. I am sure that President Jacque Chirac will do his best to achieve the peaceful settlement of this conflict.

Mr President, the French businessmen cooperate in Azerbaijan and they are pleased to be here. They rely on you and your country. They are very glad to do business in Azerbaijan. So we want to improve the Azerbaijani -French relations and to make close friendship.

Heydar Aliyev: Our people are devoted to their national, moral values, and at the same time we accept the universal and European values and they are part of our mode of life.

Market economy and economic reforms have already been conducted in Azerbaijan. We have established a legal, democratic and secular state.

Renaud Muselier: We are very attentive towards Azerbaijan. We attach special importance to the integration of Azerbaijan to Europe. Azerbaijan has made progress in all the fields.

"Azerbaijan" October 2, 2002

Brief essays


General historical background

Azerbaijani-French relations

Historical backgrounds

Azerbaijan - Europe