The meeting between the presidents of Russia and Azerbaijan took place on the eve of the third Caspian Summit.
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President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev: Mr President,
It is a pleasure to see you again in Azerbaijan. Thank you for accepting the invitation and coming to visit us.
During your last visit to Baku, we agreed to hold a summit of Caspian states before the end of this year. I am very glad that you have ensured we achieve this goal, and hope for good results of today’s discussions.
This is also a good opportunity to review the agenda of our relations, to see what else we can do to expand them.
We have been holding meetings on a regular basis: this is our third meeting in three months, so we have had ample opportunity to discuss everything in detail, but, nevertheless, life goes on and everything moves forward. I am therefore very pleased to have this meeting.
Our bilateral relations have been going well: our political cooperation is at a high level and our economies are in the process of overcoming the crisis.
With regard to regional issues, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you once again for your active participation in the negotiations process to settle the Nagorno Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Your personal involvement and the impetus you provide to hold meetings play a crucial and positive role.
I hope that we will be able to move this process forward and ensure peace and security in our region. This is possible only if the conflict is settled on the basis of the new international legal principles and the decision of independent international organisations which was reflected in the joint declaration, signed in the Meiendorf.
Once again, I would like to welcome you and look forward to continued active relations between our states.
President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Mr President,
I am also very happy to have this opportunity for us to meet again. Thank you for the invitation to visit Azerbaijan and participate in the summit.
Indeed, this idea was born relatively recently, in the course of our last meeting, during my visit to Azerbaijan. I am pleased that our colleagues have supported it, and today we will meet to discuss issues of Caspian relations.
As for our bilateral relationship, you have described the situation very well, and there is nothing left for me to add. Our contacts at the top level have been developing very well, as well as cooperation between our governments, public organisations and business communities. In other words, there is no need to think up any new approaches; we should just continue to develop these relations systematically.
We should, perhaps, intensify business contacts considering that both our countries have already emerged from the crisis. At the same time, last year’s developments are still affecting the bilateral trade. I have noticed that your exchange rate is slightly down and, of course, we should do everything we can to make sure it goes up again.
Following our discussions on other issues relevant for the Caspian as well as the broader region, we are ready to continue our efforts to ensure security in the region. Russia will continue to assist in the process of building relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia, in particular in regard to the Nagorno Karabakh problem.
We have seen certain progress in this area recently. I agree with you that the resolution of this conflict must be reached on the basis of international law, and efforts are being made along all lines. We are ready to contribute to this process, just as we did before.
Thank you again for the invitation.