"Strengthening of Russia's strategic partnership with Azerbaijan plays an extremely important role in the existing difficult situation in international relations," Gennady Zyuganov, leader of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, said at the sidelines of "Moscow-Baku Axis: Towards New Geopolitic of Caucasus" conference.
Gennady Zyuganov recalled about his friendly relations with national leader of the Azerbaijani people Heydar Aliyev. After mentioning the period when current President Ilham Aliyev headed the Azerbaijani delegation in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Gennady Zyuganov stressed that in those years, there was close cooperation between delegations, and Russia highly appreciated the support that the Azerbaijani delegation showed to the Russian delegation at the last session. "I knew Heydar Aliyev. We were friends until his last days. When we were deputies of the European Parliament with Ilham Aliyev and were sitting not far from each other, Heydar Aliyev arrived and told his son: 'These are our friends, and we must do everything in order to strengthen our ties.' Since then,, ties between deputies have been strengthened, and we have contributed to the restoration of peace and justice in the Caucasus, "Zyuganov said.
According to him, "personal achievements, personal courage and personal foresight of Heydar Aliyev played an exceptional role at the time. When Azerbaijan was almost on fire, all leading intellectuals, talented people and elders appealed to him and asked to head the republic. He then took a number of measures, which should be a great example for many, including for neighbors. He did this in order to reconcile people and prevent military conflict from breaking out. He personally met with the Russian community, with priests and told them: "I will be the guarantor of your security and will do everything to ensure that the Russian community stays in Azerbaijan and is confident that its rights will be protected."
Gennady Zyuganov awards President Ilham Aliyev with commemorative badge of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation
During his recent trip to Azerbaijan, Zyuganov visited several schools, where students are learning in Russian language, including famous 23rd Pushkin school where Vice President and First Lady of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyeva studied. "She made a lot of efforts to turn the Russian language into the language of interethnic communication in Azerbaijan. Today there are 380 schools where Russian is taught at a high level. And we believe that it is fundamentally important for the development of relations and our cooperation."