Iran congratulates Azerbaijan on liberation of Shusha

November 9, 2020 - 20:56

TEHRAN – The Iranian embassy in Baku has congratulated Azerbaijan on the liberation of the strategic city of Shusha, a key city in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh which has been under Armenian control for more than two and a half decades.

“The embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Baku expresses congratulations on the liberation of the historical and cultural city of Shusha, which is one of the symbols of the cultural commonality of the two nations of Iran and Azerbaijan. God willing, the call of Takbir from the minarets of the historic Shusha Mosque will soon caress the souls of all Muslims and supporters of Velayat in the region,” the Iranian embassy in Baku said in a statement on its official Telegram channel.

The statement also pointed to the recent remarks by Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution of Iran, about Azerbaijan’s right to liberate its occupied territories.

In a televised speech last week, the Leader expressed support for Azerbaijan, saying all Azerbaijani territories occupied by Armenia should be freed.

“This war is a bitter incident and it threatens the security of the region. Of course, all Azerbaijani territories occupied by Armenia should be freed. All these lands should be given back to Azerbaijan. One of the main conditions is that these lands should be returned to Azerbaijan. The Republic of Azerbaijan is entitled to be in control of these lands, and therefore, all of them should be freed,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.

He added, “Of course, the safety of all Armenians living in those lands should be ensured. International borders should be respected and the two sides should not transgress against the borders of other countries. The integrity of international borders should be protected and terrorists should not be allowed to deploy their forces near the borders. According to the reports that we have received, although some people deny them while there are reliable reports confirming this, a number of terrorists from here and there have become involved in this war.”

The Leader's remarks were immediately welcomed by Azerbaijan.

“We highly appreciate the statement made by the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei on the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict and the support given to the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan,” the Press Service Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan said in a statement hours after the Leader expressed Iran’s support for Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity.

The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry added, “All the territories of Azerbaijan occupied by Armenia must be liberated and all these territories must be returned to Azerbaijan, - the Supreme Leader said, reiterating the strong support of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Azerbaijan's just position based on international law.”

Mohammad Hossein Farhangi, an Iranian lawmaker representing Tabriz in the Iranian parliament also congratulated Azerbaijan on liberating the city of Shusha.

In a televised message on Sunday, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev announced the liberation of the strategic city of Shusha.

“After 28 years, the adhan [call to prayer] will be heard in Shusha,” Aliyev gleefully said in his address to the nation on Sunday.

On Monday, the Azerbaijani president announced in a tweet that his country’s troops liberated 23 more villages from the occupation.

The Azerbaijani Ministry of Defense said in a statement on Monday that combat operations continued in various parts of the Nagorno-Karabakh region such as Aghdara, Aghdam, Khojavand, and Gubadly.

Last week, while Azerbaijani officials were expressing gratitude for Tehran’s staunch support for Baku, a less known Azerbaijani lawmaker called Behruz Marrramov made remarks that resulted in many Azerbaijani officials admonishing him for his careless remarks against Iran. The lawmaker downplayed Iran’s support to Azerbaijan and implicitly accused it of deploying terrorists to Nagorno-Karabakh.

The Disciplinary Commission of the Azerbaijani parliament took disciplinary action against Maharramov. The members of the commission noted that the views expressed by Maharramov about Iran at the plenary session of the parliament on November 6, 2020, contradict the spirit of friendly and good neighborly relations between Azerbaijan and Iran. They also said these views did not reflect the position of the parliament.

Ali Huseynli, the deputy speaker of Azerbaijan’s parliament, has condemned the remarks by his colleague Behruz Maharramov about Iran.

“Relations between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Islamic Republic of Iran are friendly and based on good neighborliness,” Huseynli said in a statement, according to the embassy of Iran in Baku. He added mutual meetings and cooperation between Tehran and Baku play an important role in the development of these relations.

Azeri media outlets also criticized Mahrramov for his remarks, accusing him of undermining Azerbaijan’s national interests.

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