President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva viewed progress of works carried out in Talish village

President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva viewed progress of works carried out in Talish village


President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva and their daughter Arzu Aliyeva have viewed the progress of works carried out in the Talish village of the Tartar district.

The head of state and the First Lady first viewed the Memorial stone in the Talish village.

The valiant Azerbaijani Army under the leadership of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Ilham Aliyev liberated this strategic area from Armenia on October 3, 2020. At one of the high points in the Talish village, the Memorial stone was installed on which the text of the tweet shared by the Commander-in-Chief was engraved on the day the area was liberated from occupation.

Special Representative of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan in the liberated territories of the Karabakh Economic Region (except Shusha district) Emin Huseynov informed the head of state and the First Lady of the work done on the basis of the master plan of the Talish village.

On October 4, 2021, the head of state raised the national flag of the Republic of Azerbaijan at the Flag Square in the Talish village. As part of the first stage of the repair and restoration works carried out in the village, landscaping works were carried out in the Flag Square.

The head of state and the First Lady viewed the conditions created in the two-storey administrative building, the kindergarten and the two-storey building of the 78-seat school.

The President of Azerbaijan lit the Novruz bonfire in the Talish village and congratulated the people of Azerbaijan on the occasion of the holiday.

Address of President Ilham Aliyev to the people of Azerbaijan on the occasion of Novruz holiday

- Dear brothers and sisters.

I sincerely congratulate you on the upcoming Novruz holiday.

This is the third time I am sending my Novruz greetings to the people of Azerbaijan from our native Karabakh. This is great happiness. Today, we are honoring the memory of our heroic martyrs who gave us this happiness. May Allah rest the souls of all our martyrs in peace! I am sending my warm greetings to the heroic Azerbaijani soldiers who gave us this happiness. We have regained our native lands at the cost of their lives.

During the Second Karabakh War, the entire Azerbaijani people were as united as a fist. I am sending my greetings to all the people of Azerbaijan again. I wish the Azerbaijani people continued success and victories!

Our lands were under occupation for nearly 30 years. Armenia carried out a policy of ethnic cleansing against our people. Hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis were forced out of their native lands, became refugees and displaced persons. Acts of genocide, injustice and war crimes were committed against our people. We will never forget that. We must never forget that.

For 30 years, we raised our voice of justice in all international organizations because of the occupation. Unfortunately, there was no reaction to our words from any institution. On the contrary, the mediators involved in the Karabakh conflict tries not to solve the issue but to freeze it. The new information that has been emerging over the two and a half years since the Second Karabakh War confirms this again.

We have restored our rights, we have restored on the battlefield. In 44 days, we expelled the contemptible enemy from our lands and raised the Azerbaijani flag in Karabakh. This is the brightest page of the centuries-old history of Azerbaijan. For 44 days, the people of Azerbaijan were united behind our army like a fist. We liberated the occupied lands by shedding blood.

Unfortunately, Armenia has not yet learned the lessons of the Second Karabakh War. Because we are seeing that revengeful forces have risen in Armenia. Territorial claims against Azerbaijan and Azerbaijani lands are still being put forward in Armenia. We are warning the Armenian leadership to refrain from these dirty deeds. We are also warning certain countries that stand behind Armenia from here, from the liberated village of Talish, to stop these dirty deeds. No external force can shatter the will of the state and the people of Azerbaijan.

For 30 years, Armenia, as well as its patrons and allies, tried to use various opportunities and means to prevent us from doing our legitimate work. They wanted to tire us with meaningless negotiations. They wanted us to come to terms with the occupation.

So much effort was made to make us start cooperating with Armenia during the occupation. The people and the state of Azerbaijan overcame all those attempts by showing strong will. Because ours is the cause of justice. During the occupation, I repeatedly said that if the issue is not resolved peacefully, we will liberate our native lands from the invaders through war. Notice how impudent the Armenian leadership became – they wanted to deprive of the Azerbaijani people of their legitimate rights by saying “Karabakh is Armenia, full stop”. Unfortunately, the forces behind Armenia, including the countries that co-chaired the Minsk Group at the time, did not react to this statement in any way. And now, after Azerbaijan has liberated its native land, just look at how many unfair steps are being taken against us and how many shady dealings are being committed. Armenia’s patrons, the countries involved in Armenia's policy of aggression have declared an information war on us. In some countries, they organize certain conferences and symposia related to the internal affairs of Azerbaijan. Some pro-Armenian countries recognize the “independence of Nagorno-Karabakh”, which is not on the world map and does not exist in the territory of Azerbaijan. What does that mean? It means that during the occupation, the only purpose of all those forces was to perpetuate this occupation. They wanted not to resolve the conflict, but to freeze it.

During the Second Karabakh War, so much pressure was put on us and so much assistance was provided to Armenia. Several cargo planes full of weapons were sent to Armenia on a daily basis. Mercenaries from foreign countries were sent there. Armenia’s allies tried to stop us in different ways. But no-one could stand in our way. I said that we would rather die than go back. Either the freedom of Karabakh or death! No-one could stand in our way. They cannot stand in our way today and won’t be able to tomorrow either. If someone thinks that the ugly plans drawn up against us can succeed, they are wrong. Every dirty plan against us will be met with our strong will, our strong policy and our Victorious Army.

Notice what the Armenian leadership, which used to say that “Karabakh is Armenia, full stop”, is saying now. Today, they are asking us to give them the opportunity to live on an area of 29,000 square kilometers. Why didn't they say this during the occupation? During the occupation, why did they attempt to annex all our occupied lands under the name of the “Nagorno-Karabakh Republic” and publish books about that? Why didn't international organizations and certain pro-Armenian countries, who turned a blind eye to these ugly and illegal acts, criticize Armenia at that time? How much longer do we have to deal with double standards? How much more hypocrisy do we have to face?

We applied force to restore our territorial integrity in accordance with the UN Charter, liberated the territories of Azerbaijan recognized by the international community, expelled the enemy, crushed the Armenian army, and brought it to its knees. This is our rightful duty. We are building and creating now, including here in the village of Talish, in the settlement of Sugovushan, in Hadrut, in Shusha and all other liberated lands. Armenia devastated and plundered these territories. For 30 years, they dismantled the stones from our buildings one by one and sold them in the markets both in Armenia and in its neighboring country. But we are building and creating.

Notice that less than a year after the reconstruction of the village of Talish began, 20 families have already returned to the Talish village and a total of 180 will return. In less than a year, about 180 families will live in the Talish village. All opportunities have been created here for these families. Everyone can see the beautiful houses, schools, kindergartens and public buildings that have been built here. Employment opportunities have been created. We are a nation of builders. Unlike Armenia, we build and create in our own territory.

Today, Armenia, which used to say that “Karabakh is Armenia, full stop” and threatened us with a new war, is going out of its way to find itself a new patron. They are showing to the world again how treacherous and ungrateful they are. Now they are looking for a new owner. They don’t know whose feet to fall under. All this is to no avail. There is one condition for them to live comfortably on an area of 29,000 square kilometers – Armenia must accept our conditions, officially recognize Karabakh as the territory of Azerbaijan, sign a peace treaty with us and carry out delimitation work according to our conditions. Only under these circumstances can they live comfortably on an area of 29,000 square kilometers, which is all they want now. If Armenia does not recognize our territorial integrity, we will not recognize their territorial integrity either. Armenia and the hypocritical countries behind it should know what the result will be. They should know that no dirty plan against us will work. We have power, we have friends, we have a strong position in the world and we have a strong determination. We demonstrated this during the war and in the post-war period.

The Talish village was liberated on October 3, 2020. A week after the start of the Second Karabakh War, we already liberated the village of Talish by shedding blood. At the same time, we liberated the settlement of Sugovushan.

During the Second Karabakh War, that military operation was of great importance. Because we waged our war of freedom in different directions, including this direction. Therefore, the successes achieved in this direction were of great importance for the future course of the war. At the same time, it also raised the morale of our Army and our people. Because the strategic importance of the Talish village was obvious to everyone.

For 44 days, we were only moving forward and did not take a single step back. We showed the strength and high moral qualities of the Azerbaijani people on the battlefield for 44 days. Not a single person deserted our Army. According to the latest information, there were not 10,000 but 11,000 deserters in the Armenian army. They should not forget this, and if they do, we will remind them. Let no-one forget the results of the Second Karabakh War. Everyone should accept the new realities. No-one should forget that our lands had been under occupation for 30 years, and these important factors for the future peace agreement should not be forgotten. Because we see situations sometimes that as if there was no war, as if there was no occupation, as if no-one turned Aghdam into the “Hiroshima of the Caucasus”. They want to forget it and make us forget it. It will never be the case. The realities of the occupation, the realities of the war and the post-war realities must and will be reflected in the peace negotiations. Otherwise, there will be no peace agreement. If Armenia doesn't need it, we don't need it either. Let's see what the end will be.

We are standing in our native Karabakh today, in our native Zangezur land, and we will live here forever. The people of Azerbaijan rightfully live with a sense of pride. Each of us, including the Azerbaijanis living abroad, has been living with pride for two and a half years. We have proved to everyone, to the whole world that we are a great nation, and as a country that has restored its territorial integrity on its own, we will continue to only move forward. Just as we advanced for 44 days during the Patriotic War, we are advancing and will continue to advance in all fields and directions in the post-war period too.

I want to congratulate my dear people on the occasion of the upcoming Novruz holiday from the bottom of my heart. Let me once again complete my speech with the famous words, “Karabakh is Azerbaijan!”

x x x

Then, President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva and their daughter Arzu Aliyeva familiarized themselves with the conditions created in the Club community center.

The head of state and the First Lady got acquainted with the repair and restoration works carried out in the private houses in the Talish village.

20 houses were restored and reconstructed in the first stage. As part of the Great Return Program, on March 16, 20 families living in temporary residential areas in Baku, Tartar, Samukh, and Goranboy were relocated to the Talish village of Tartar district.

President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva and their daughter Arzu Aliyeva visited the house of villager Ayyub Akbarov.

President Ilham Aliyev: Hello.

Host Ayyub Akbarov: It is nice to meet you, Mr. President. Long live our President.

First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva: Hello, I am pleased to meet you. Congratulations!

Hostess Arzu Akbarova: Hello, Mrs. Aliyeva, you are welcome.

President Ilham Aliyev: How are you?

Ayyub Akbarov: Great, how else can I be? When I left here, I was a young man. I left at the age of 30.

President Ilham Aliyev: What year did you leave here?

Ayyub Akbarov: I left in 1993. Thank God! I can't believe my eyes.

President Ilham Aliyev: Was Talish village like this back then?

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes.

President Ilham Aliyev: This is your home.

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes, this is my home. Thankfully, I got a job as soon as we arrived. They gave me the community center.

President Ilham Aliyev: Do you work there?

Ayyub Akbarov: Inshallah, I will employ 20-30 people here as well.

President Ilham Aliyev: Yes, very good.

Ayyub Akbarov: Thank God, Mr. President, we have everything, thank God.

President Ilham Aliyev: Let's have a look. When did you come here? Two days ago?

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes, we came about a day or two ago. Please come in.

President Ilham Aliyev: Dining room.

Ayyub Akbarov: We are very happy.

President Ilham Aliyev: Where did you live before?

Ayyub Akbarov: We lived in Baku. But we always believed that we would come here one day. We dreamed of going back.

President Ilham Aliyev: Of course. It's been a long time, but we're back.

Ayyub Akbarov: Thank God, we are back. You know, Mr. President, at that time I was working here, on the farm. The people of our village were engaged in viticulture. We lived in fear. Now I am not afraid of anyone. We are not afraid of anyone now.

President Ilham Aliyev: Now they are afraid of us.

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes, of course, they are afraid of us now. We are not afraid of anyone. Thank you, we have come here, we will live and we will create here. We will also preserve the charming beauty of this place.

President Ilham Aliyev: Inshallah.

Ayyub Akbarov: I have also talked with the community here as an elder, and we will make this place even more beautiful.

President Ilham Aliyev: This is only the first stage, and 178 more houses will be built here and the people will move in. Probably more than a thousand people will live here. What did you do when you lived here, livestock breeding?

Ayyub Akbarov: We were engaged in farming, we had vineyards. We cultivated them very well. The hated enemy attacked us in February, as they did in Khojaly. In fact, they attacked us at night. From here, we all went to Borsunlu village on foot.

President Ilham Aliyev: To the village of Borsunlu?

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes, to the village of Borsunlu. We had finished pruning in the vineyards and were expecting a rich harvest.

President Ilham Aliyev: So you were mainly engaged in viticulture?

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes, the main thing was viticulture, but we also grew potatoes. The soil is very fertile.

President Ilham Aliyev: Now it is necessary to restore everything. You will restore it all – grapes and potatoes.

Ayyub Akbarov: Of course, we will do that. We will not put the whole burden on the state. We are here now, so we will create too.

President Ilham Aliyev: Everything is available. There is water as well.

Ayyub Akbarov: Thank God.

President Ilham Aliyev: Conditions will be created for people to engage in farming. The air is reminiscent of a resort.

Ayyub Akbarov: Yes, we did not get sick when we lived here, Mr. President.

President Ilham Aliyev: Of course, people stay healthy here and don't get sick.

Ayyub Akbarov: We did not suffer from any disease here. Now we will enjoy this charming scenery, this beautiful weather. We are very happy to be back.

President Ilham Aliyev: Look what the Armenians have done to these villages, to these places. All buildings were destroyed. During the occupation, not a single stone was left unturned. They only plundered, destroyed and demolished.

Ayyub Akbarov: Let me tell you something interesting. My brother is in Germany. He owns a restaurant there. He tells me that the eight people sitting in that corner are Armenians. They are watching Talish. They say, look at those places, it is Azerbaijan. So they are saying it themselves.

President Ilham Aliyev: This is just the beginning.

Ayyub Akbarov: We are here, we don’t set our sights on anyone else's land. This is how we live. This is what our people are like. We are a neat people. We are not a nation of thieves. We have no claims to other people’s land.

President Ilham Aliyev: Yes.

Ayyub Akbarov: We will live here for centuries.

President Ilham Aliyev: Forever, forever.

Ayyub Akbarov: My sons, my grandsons, everyone says that Karabakh is Azerbaijan. I look at those words, my grandchildren come and read it, and they know it by heart. When a child is born, we will whisper it into their ear – Karabakh is Azerbaijan! Thank you again.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Ayyub Akbarov: When my President comes next time, we will treat you to samovar tea.

President Ilham Aliyev: I will definitely come. Let the village be fully built. I will definitely come when the village is fully built.

x x x

Then, President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva and Arzu Aliyeva had a conversation with villagers.

President Ilham Aliyev: I sincerely congratulate you on the occasion of the upcoming holiday and your return to the Talish village.

Residents: Thank you very much.

President Ilham Aliyev: We are back and we will live here forever.

Female resident: Inshallah.

President Ilham Aliyev: This is the first stage of the Talish village. Look how beautiful it is. All the buildings are wonderful.

Residents: May Allah protect you, may Allah bless you.

President Ilham Aliyev: Probably, after a year or so, all the remaining 158 houses will also be built.

Residents: May Allah grant you a long life.

President Ilham Aliyev: More than a thousand people will live here. Thousands of people will live here afterwards.

Residents: Inshallah.

President Ilham Aliyev: We have returned to our native lands by shedding blood and giving martyrs. May Allah rest the souls of all our martyrs in peace.

Residents: Amen.

President Ilham Aliyev: We have come here at the cost of their lives, and we have now brought you here as well. I know you have been here for two days now.

Residents: Thank you very much.

President Ilham Aliyev: All issues related to employment, to working in public and state jobs have been resolved. Karabakh is a paradise.

Female resident: It is Azerbaijan!

President Ilham Aliyev: It is Azerbaijan!

Residents: Can we have our picture taken?

President Ilham Aliyev: Yes, let's do that.

Male resident: Thank you very much, may Allah bless you. We are grateful to you for creating such conditions for us. May Allah grant you a long life.

President Ilham Aliyev: Where did you live before?

Male resident: We lived in the Barda district. Now we are back to our own village. May Allah bless you.

Young girl: Mr. President, please allow me to welcome you on behalf of the youth and other residents of the Talish village.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Young girl: I am doubly proud now because I am standing here on our lands freed from occupation. And also I am standing in front of you. I know we were all looking forward to this day. Thank God we have experienced this day. The liberation of the Talish village from occupation was of great importance. Thank you very much. May Allah bless you. Please let me say another thing – we are also grateful to you for the conditions you have created for the young people.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Residents: May Allah grant you a long life. There is no limit to our joy, honestly. Can we have a picture taken with you, Mr. President?

Another male resident: We are grateful to Allah for granting you to us. May Allah grant you a long life.

President Ilham Aliyev: See how comfortable the girl is in my arms?

Male resident: She isn’t as comfortable even in her father’s arms.

Female resident: She is with her grandfather, her grandfather. Thank you. Thank you very much.

Male resident: Mr. President, I want to inform you that we are two brothers. We both fought for this village. Both of us came to our village thanks to you. Our houses and yards are all very beautiful indeed. Everything is done at a high level. Thank you very much. We do appreciate that. May Allah rest the souls of our martyrs in peace.

President Ilham Aliyev: Amen!

Male Resident: You have beaten them at the table. We showed them everything on the battlefield. Thank you very much for everything.

President Ilham Aliyev: Yes, thank you.

Residents: May Allah protect you. Thank you very much. May Allah bless you.

Male Resident: My brother and I fought here.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you very much.

Male Resident: Thank you.

President Ilham Aliyev: This battle was very important, as you know. It was a strategic location. After we had liberated Talish, the Armenians saw that this was a serious matter.

Male resident: Yes, thank you.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Female resident: Please take a picture of us with the President.

President Ilham Aliyev: Let's do that.

Male resident: Karabakh is Azerbaijan!

Female resident: My daughter also wanted to meet you, but she is not here now. She could not come.

President Ilham Aliyev: Will she come here?

Female resident: She will.

President Ilham Aliyev: Will she live here?

Female resident: She will be our guest.

Male resident: May Allah bless you. You have provided us with a house. Thank you very much.

President Ilham Aliyev addressing a child: Tell me what you wanted to say.

Resident: He says let's congratulate our grandfather on the holidays too.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you very much.

Residents: Thank you very much. May Allah bless you.

President Ilham Aliyev: There were many mines here, as you probably know.

Resident: Yes, after 44-day war, I work here in the Community Mine Action Team of the International Eurasian Press Foundation. There are mines there, and I take part in clearing them.

First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva: Mr. President, please take this beautiful girl.

President Ilham Aliyev: Come on here.

Resident: Thank you, Mr. President.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you. Thank you very much.

Resident: You are welcome. We are grateful to you. We are proud that you are here.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Resident: May Allah grant you a long life and good health for creating such conditions for us. Honestly, our joy is truly boundless.

Female resident: Our lands have been freed, we are grateful.

Resident: Yes, this is the main thing. May Allah grant you a long life and good health. Inshallah, our President will bring all the lands of Azerbaijan together. We believe in that.

Another male resident: We are proud that we have such a strong President. Karabakh is Azerbaijan! May Allah grant you a long life and good health. This is just the beginning.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Resident: Your sincerity is enough for anyone.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.

Resident: Thank you very much, may Allah bless you.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you very much, young girl, thank you very much.

Resident: Always be there for us.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you very much.

Resident: Mr. President, may Allah bless you.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you. Let's all take a picture together. And let’s all say “Karabakh is Azerbaijan!”

All in one voice: Karabakh is Azerbaijan!

Resident: There is a church here.

President Ilham Aliyev: Up there. Yes, I have been there.

Resident: We have found a book there. I have read it. It is about Ottoman Turks.

Another resident: It belongs to the Ottomans, not to the Albanians. We were the first and last residents of this place.

President Ilham Aliyev: There was a church and a Russian church there. I went and looked last time I was here. It is in a run down state.

Resident: There was one up there, but it belonged to the Ottomans, because I brought a book from there and read it. It belonged to the Ottoman Empire. That church belonged not to the Albanians, but to the Ottomans.

President Ilham Aliyev: Now the location of a mosque has been determined there. So a mosque will be built.

Resident: We were the first and last residents of this place. It was very nice. I used to work as a viticulture foreman here.

President Ilham Aliyev: Was it a collective farm back then?

Resident: Yes, it was engaged in viticulture. I used to teach people about viticulture here. But there is nothing left now.

President Ilham Aliyev: Table grapes or technical varieties?

Resident: Those were grapes for wine, very nice. The area of vineyards was very large, 100 hectares. And there was a beautiful apricot orchard.

President Ilham Aliyev: It is now necessary to plant all of them now. There is a lot of land, there is water, and the air is nice. The best conditions for agriculture are here now.

Resident: Thank you very much. Indeed, the land is also fertile.

President Ilham Aliyev: The soil is black soil.

Resident: There were many springs here. A river flowed here, but we were stunned that the river is not there any more.

President Ilham Aliyev: They built canals and ponds in some places in Karabakh, so they stopped the flow of water. You will be discovering things little by little now.

Resident: There were some beautiful springs at the bottom of the mountain over there.

President Ilham Aliyev: Are they still there now?

Resident: These places are ideal for tourists now.

President Ilham Aliyev: Drinking water?

Resident: Yes, there are springs and drinking water there.

President Ilham Aliyev: A school has been built here and children will go to that school. There is also a kindergarten.

Resident: Thank you very much.

President Ilham Aliyev: Of course, a lot of work has been done here. It was our duty to retake these lands and rebuild them, and then bring you here.

Female residents: Thank you very much. We appreciate that.

Male resident: From now on, we are not going anywhere. Even if the world falls apart, we are not going anywhere.

President Ilham Aliyev: No-one can displace you from now on.

Resident: Your representatives are also very nice and sincere. We are grateful to all of you. Very good. We are very pleased with you. May Allah be pleased with you and our state.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank God, life will be very good here. You deserve even more. You have suffered for 30 years here and there, in dormitories and tents. Now you have such wonderful conditions.

Resident: May Allah rest the souls of all our martyrs in peace. You worked the hardest, Mr. President. The whole world couldn't cope with you, thank God.

Another resident: The whole world couldn't do anything. May Allah bless you.

President Ilham Aliyev: You stood behind me. This is why we said that we would rather die than retreat. This is it.

Resident: We are always behind you.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you very much. We are on the eve of the holidays. We wish you lovely holidays.

Resident: Thank you very much. We are grateful to you, Mr. President.

President Ilham Aliyev: Goodbye.

Residents: Goodbye.