From the talk of President of the Azerbaijan Republic, Heydar Aliyev with Secretary-General of the OIC, Izzedine Laraki - Tehran, 8 December, 1997

Izzedine Laraki: I state that I feel proud to meet such a prominent politician as Heydar Aliyev. Mr. President, I appreciate that you have found the time and arrived at the VIII Summit of the OIC.

Heydar Aliyev: Honorable Mr. Laraki, I congratulate you on the occasion of the VIII Summit of Organization of the Islamic Conference. I underscore that I have arrived at this meeting feeling great interest and I attach high importance to my participation here.

I estimate positively the work of Organization of the Islamic Conference and emphasizing that I fully support its activity, I say that after election of Mr. Laraki as the Secretary-General of the organization, its work has much intensified.

Izzedine Laraki: Mr. President Heydar Aliyev, I appreciate you for the warm words. I state with satisfaction that a number of countries that gained recently their independence have affiliated to the OIC.

Mr. President, we consider that affiliation of Azerbaijan to the OIC will much strengthen our institution. Our institution will not spare efforts to justify hopes pinned by Azerbaijan on us.

Heydar Aliyev: I stress that the independent Azerbaijan Republic constantly and closely partakes in the work of Organization of the Islamic Conference. We regard the OIC as an institution playing an important role in the solution of problems of Islamic countries and further strengthening of solidarity of the Islamic world.

I took part at the OIC Summit held in Morocco in 1994 where resolutions concerning Azerbaijan were adopted. Besides, the issues of occupation of 20 percent of Azerbaijani lands by armenian troops, forced expatriation of more than a million our citizens from their native places, as well as habitation of refugees in hard conditions in tents were discussed at the conference held under your leadership in Jakarta in 1996 where relevant resolutions were also passed. That conference charged you with deeper studying the issue and reporting afterwards.

I appreciate you for all this, Mr. Laraki. You have sent a special letter to the OCSE chairman regarding this matter, worked out and presented a report at the Tehran Summit on the instruction of the Jakarta conference. I have studied the text of your report and I think it is a very valuable document. I hope that owing to your leadership and efforts, the VIII Summit of Organization of the Islamic Conference will adopt a special resolution touching the problem of Azerbaijan and reflecting at the same time this issue in other adopted documents.

Izzedine Laraki: I appreciate you, Heydar Aliyev for high evaluation of the activity of Organization of the Islamic Conference. Mr. President, the problems faced by Azerbaijan are our common problems. Everything can be tolerated, but it is impossible to agree with seizure of lands. You can be sure that Organization of the Islamic Conference is fully on your side. You can be confident that the VIII OIC Summit will lead its work just in this line.

The Azerbaijan daily, 13 December, 1997