Mikhail Bocharnikov on Russia-Azerbaijan friendship and cooperation

Mikhail Bocharnikov on Russia-Azerbaijan friendship and cooperation

Russian ambassador to Azerbaijan Mikhail Bocharnikov, speaking at the press conference today, told about the modern state of the Russian-Azerbaijani relations. According to the correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza, the diplomat stressed in the first place that the relations of the two countries are developing steadily, the Russia-Azerbaijan friendship is embodied in concrete projects within the framework of bilateral cooperation.

"For me, as ambassador, it’s very joyful that we are moving forward in all directions. The course of mutual understanding continues to develop in politics. The tone is set by the presidents. This year one meeting between our leaders was already held, and I’m sure, there will be another one," he said.

The diplomat said that a Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran summit is expected by the end of this year. "This time the tripartite summit will be held in Russia, and as part of the event there will be top-level meetings with the participation of the heads of state," Mikhail Bocharnikov said.

The Russian Ambassador to Azerbaijan said that in January-March of 2019, the trade turnover between Azerbaijan and Russia exceeded $500 million and showed an increase by more than 10%.

Speaking about cultural cooperation, the ambassador highlighted the role of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, with assistance of which exhibitions of Russian artist and sculptor Zurab Tsereteli were organized in Baku.

Answering the question of Vestnik Kavkaza on military cooperation, Mikhail Bocharnikov said that it is based on annual plans, highlighting Azerbaijan’s participation in the Army international games organized by the Russian Defense Ministry. "Azerbaijan successfully takes part in various competitions, winning prizes. It is very pleasant that the Sea Cup, which takes place in Baku waters, is a part of these games. This sea platform has been provided by Azerbaijan from 2017, and in August of this year the competition will be held in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea once again," he said.

"With regard to military cooperation, it is necessary to note constant contacts at the level of the top military leadership. Meetings of our defense ministers and chiefs of the general staffs are regular, they are in contact at various meetings, including within the CIS. As you know, last week, Azerbaijan's Minister of Defense Zakir Hasanov visited Anapa, where he met with Russian Minister of Defense Sergey Shoigu within the framework of a meeting of defense ministers of the CIS countries. They discussed current military cooperation," the Russian ambassador to Azerbaijan said.