Speech of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev at the ceremony dedicated to the International Women`s Day - Gulustan palace, March 7, 2000

Dear ladies!


Dear mothers and sisters!


I congratulate you on the International Women`s Day. Today this hall seems more beautiful than ever. Because the most of the audience are women. The beauty of the women inspire us, the men. 


Zahra khanum said that you are always looking forward to this date. Just know that men are  also looking forward to this holiday. Because on this day men demonstrate their care and attention to the women more.


It is one of the best holidays. Because it is dedicated to women. The role of women in the society is great. Life has no meaning without women.


The Azerbaijani women are always distinguished with their intelligence, wisdom, loyalty, heroism and high maternity. The 20th century was the age of the emancipation of women. The Azerbaijani women used the historic opportunities effectively, restored their right in the society. After the 1920s suitable conditions were created for the emancipation of the women in Azerbaijan.


We no longer have this problem in Azerbaijan. Because the Azerbaijani women were emancipated in the 1930. Since that time they have hold worty positions in our society.


We are proud that the Azerbaijani women have contributed to all the spheres in our country. Thanks to the activity of the women, the education has developed and reached high level, people have become literate in Azerbaijan. Thanks to the efforts of the women, our medicine has developed, too. I mentioned these fields, because more than 60 per cent of who work in these fields is female.


Besides their contributions to the society, women must be respected also because of their being mothers. As for the gender equality, I must say that women work more than men. There has been a cliche since the ancient times that men must earn money, maintain family, while women must be housewives. However, it is no longer like this. Because both men and women work and earn money now. They both maintain family and raise their children. But there is a big difference between them. Because women give birth to children, care for babies. No men can do that. Our respect to women is increasing. Because there was unfair attitude towards women in the past. But now it has changed. Now Azerbaijan is independent. It is becoming a legal, democratic, secular state, pursuing the market economy and integrating into the world culture.


The role of women in all the fields are very important. In secular state women are free and enjoy all the rights. Our women achieved this freedom within a short time. Now they contribute to our society and our people. Every women has hard duties now. The Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict over the Nagorno-Karabakh has a very big impact on women. Because a lot of women have lost their husbands, brothers in the war. Besides, women accept tragedies more emotionally than men. The Azerbaijani women suffer from the losses. Therefore solidarity is stronger among women.


Some territories of Azerbaijan have been occupied by Armenia. Over one million Azerbaijani citizens, have become refugees and live in tents now. Mostly women suffer from the difficulties of such a life. I congratulate especially the mothers of the martyrs and the women living in tents on this holiday. 


The Azerbaijani women are also distinguished with their beauty. Our men should not seek for beautiful women in other countries. Because the most beautiful women are in Azerbaijan. Women just need more attention, care and respect.


Attention and care may be in different forms. Men must always respect women, pay much attention to them. It is a human culture to respect and pay attention to women. I wish our men never to forget respect and care for our women.


The women hold worthy positions in many spheres in Azerbaijan. However, we have not achieved what we want. Yesterday I signed a special decree "On the implementation of the state policy on women in the Republic of Azerbaijan". I am satisfied with the attitude of the women towards this document. I assure you that the decree will be implemented.


I think that women must be represented in the governmental structures of Azerbaijan more. I have made a decision that there must be a department dealing with the problems of the women in all the executive bodies, and one of the heads of those bodies must be a woman. We have established the State Committee on Women`s Problems. Now we see how important this committee is for our country. But in order to make its activity more effective, we have to create its branches in all our regions and make our women work in all the fields. Women want it. Many women work better than men. We must create better conditions for our women.


My attitute towards the Azerbaijani women is known. I love yo all. As the head of the state or just a simple man, I am ready to pay attention to you.


I wish our women the best. Every women wants to be happy. I wish all our women good health and successes.


Happy holiday, dear women! Thank you.