BAKU: Azeri president, NATO chief discuss ties, Karabakh

Azeri president, NATO chief discuss ties, Karabakh

Xalq Qazeti, Baku
20 Mar 04

Text of unattributed report by Azerbaijani newspaper Xalq Qazeti on 20
March headlined “Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has met the NATO

A special correspondent of Azartac news agency reports from Bratislava
that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev met NATO Secretary-General
Jaap de Hoop Scheffer within the framework of his visit to Slovakia on
19 March.

The meeting, which was held in an atmosphere of sincerity, discussed
existing ties between NATO and Azerbaijan, out country’s integration
into the Euroatlantic structures and preparations for a NATO summit to
be held in Istanbul this June.

Having emphasized that he attaches major importance to cooperation
with NATO, Aliyev said that Azerbaijan’s partnership with this
organization has a progressive nature. Speaking about the importance
of integration into the Euroatlantic structures, Aliyev added that
Azerbaijan would continue its policy in this field.

Scheffer stressed that NATO was paying major attention to the South
Caucasus and described Azerbaijan as an important partner of this

The meeting discussed a number of issues regarding Azerbaijan-NATO
cooperation, especially an action plan on military cooperation with
NATO prepared in Azerbaijan.

The meeting also discussed the situation in the South Caucasus and
prospects for the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagornyy
Karabakh conflict. Scheffer emphasized that NATO was in favour of a
swift peaceful settlement to the conflict, which is of special
importance to NATO.