From tête-à-tête talk of the President of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev with the Russian President Vladimir Putin - Russia, January 25, 2002

Vladimir Putin: Dear Heydar Aliyevitch.

I suppose that currently the bilateral relations between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Russian Federation develop very successfully. It concerns the economic sphere as well. And the political coordination of our activity in the international arena has improved.

All this shows that the relations between the two states not only improve, but grow in quality.

However, in our meeting in my residence yesterday, we stressed that a lot has to be done. We hope, and I don`t doubt even a little, that your visit will boost considerably our relations both in political and intergovernmental spheres. I think that the intergovernmental commission works enough hard and successfully. A meeting of the intergovernmental commission was planned to be held this March in Baku. But I would like to say with pleasure that our military agencies began to cooperate after long years. Our militaries started to meet, to discuss their problems and coordinate their efforts in the direction of mutual interests. From this point of view the achievement of mutual agreement on Gabala Radar Station is praise worthy. All this is a very good foundation for your visit to have such a great importance.

Heydar Aliyev: Thank you very much, for the invitation to pay an official visit to Russia, and your sincere meeting, hospitality, kind and interesting talks at your residence yesterday. I think we discussed a lot of things there with you. I am very happy for the positive progress in the Russian-Azerbaijani relations, as you. But I must openly say that it happened after your election President. Our relations started to develop very intensively and we have met 16 times within a short period. It shows the importance of these meetings. Undoubtedly, all of them were interesting and meaningful, and we discussed a lot of issues in them.

I think that the current state of our relations is satisfactory. But at the same time, I think that it is the beginning of our active future cooperation in the spheres of economy, policy, in the international arena and military. I think that it is a great job that we could prepare an agreement on the Gabala Radar Station for signing. Ten years have passed after the collapse of the USSR, and in these ten years Russia has been using this station, but there was not an agreement. It shows that there is no need for any agreement, but it is better to have it.

Vladimir Putin: You frightened me.

Heydar Aliyev: Why did I frighten you?

Vladimir Putin: Maybe there is no need for an agreement… I think it is necessary Heydar Aliyevitch, currently we have changed the relations between the two states qualitatively that we could achieve these agreements. We can work for the benefit of each other in other issues, well as the Caspian issue.

Heydar Aliyev: You are absolutely right, Vladimir Vladimirovitch. I want to say that our positions are very close in the issue of the Caspian. We signed an agreement on the principles of the division of the sea a year ago during your visit to Baku and talked about the future cooperation yesterday. I think that, Russia, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan can cooperate in this issue and push forward the question of the status of the Caspian Sea. 


Translated from \"Azerbaijan\" newspaper, January 29, 2002.