Azeri president says Armenia is a country "of no value"

BAKU Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:08pm EST

Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev answers questions during a news conference at Prague Castle in Prague April 5, 2012. REUTERS/David W Cerny

Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev answers questions during a news conference at Prague Castle in Prague April 5, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/David W Cerny

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BAKU (Reuters) - Azeri President Ilham Aliyev took his verbal attacks on arch enemy Armenia onto Twitter on Tuesday, calling his Caucasus neighbor a "colony" run from abroad.

Aliyev and his government have tried to boost their presence online, where dissident Azeri bloggers and members of the Armenian diaspora regularly attack Azerbaijan's human rights record.

"Our main enemy is the Armenian lobby ... Armenia as a country is of no value. It is actually a colony, an outpost run from abroad, a territory artificially created on ancient Azerbaijani lands," Aliyev said in a tweet microblog.

War between ethnic Azeris and Armenians erupted in 1991 over Azerbaijan's mainly Armenian-populated Nagorno-Karabakh region, which Armenian-backed forces seized along with seven surrounding Azeri districts.

A truce was signed in 1994, but there was no peace treaty, and violence still flares sporadically along Azerbaijan's border with Armenia and a frontline with Nagorno-Karabakh.

Oil-producing Azerbaijan, host to oil majors BP, Chevron and ExxonMobil, frequently threatens to take the mountain enclave back by force, and has spent heavily on its armed forces, though it says it favors diplomacy.

Armenia and Azerbaijan failed to make peace in internationally mediated talks last year and have been hurling angry rhetoric at each other ever since, although analysts do not yet detect any drift into a new armed conflict.

"We are conducting talks and at the same time building up our military strength," Aliyev said in another tweet, adding that Baku would continue its efforts to isolate its neighbor.

"Azerbaijan grows stronger and more powerful by the year, while Armenia weakens and declines every year ... We will continue our efforts to isolate Armenia."

Armenian officials were not available to comment on the statements.

Nagorno-Karabakh has run its own affairs with heavy Armenian military and financial backing since the war.

Azerbaijan accuses ethnic Armenian lobbies, active in France and the United States, of blackening its international image and has worked to counter this, notably by hosting the Eurovision song contest this year.

(Reporting by Margarita Antidze; Writing by Thomas Grove; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

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Comments (2)
Hyitor wrote:
According to Sultan Aliev, if a country does not have oil or natural gas then that country has no value. As a president he is extremely uneducated. Someone should remind him that there was no Azerbaijan before 1918, so Azerbaijan is not ancient. As for ARmenia’s teritory, he can look up ancient Roman, Greek, Assirian, Persian, Arabic, Egyptian and (this is for Aliev)Sumerian+Akkadian records. He then will learn what ancient means, and who occupies who’s territory. Does he even know that in Artsak (Karabak) recently archeologists unearthed the ancient city of Tigranacert, built by the ARmenian king Tigran The Great around 50BC? Where was Azerbaijan then? or Turkey?
He is lucky that ARmenian government is not trying him for treason in a “trial by absentia”. He can not simply have a nose like that if he is not Armenian.

Nov 21, 2012 3:16pm EST  --  Report as abuse
EvaAdam wrote:
Dear Hyitor,Your very educated and Agree 100% with you on all! I know a lot of history myself and it’s a shame that Areri(mongol mixed with PERSIANS) took our lands ARTSAX and calling it Azerbaijan. Our lands stretched from caspian to Mediterranean seas. Do you have Facebook, I love an Armenian with history knowledge????

Nov 24, 2012 7:34pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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