President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will travel to the Azerbaijani capital Baku to hold official talks and attend victory celebrations with his Azerbaijani counterpart Ilham Aliyev next week, The Daily Sabah reported.
Erdoğan will be in Baku on Dec. 9-10, presidential sources said, adding that he will be attending the military procession to mark Azerbaijan’s victory in liberating the occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region.
He is expected to discuss bilateral and regional issues, including the establishment of the observation center with Russia to monitor the cease-fire, the duties of the Turkish troops and economic relations, with Azerbaijani President Aliyev. Ankara has pledged its full support to Baku in its efforts to liberate its lands from Armenian occupation.
About 20% of Azerbaijan’s territory had been under illegal Armenian occupation for nearly three decades. In the most recent conflict that began on Sept. 27, Azerbaijan retook much of the land in and around the Nagorno-Karabakh enclave that it lost in a 1991-1994 war that killed an estimated 30,000 people and forced many more from their homes.
During the 44-day conflict, Azerbaijan liberated several cities and nearly 300 settlements and villages from the Armenian occupation.
Aliyev had expressed multiple times during the most recent conflict that if there was to be peace, Baku wanted to see Ankara at the negotiating table as well. Following the Nov. 10 signing of a Russia-brokered agreement to end the fighting and work toward a comprehensive resolution, Turkey agreed with Russia that its troops would also monitor the cease-fire. On Tuesday, Ankara and Moscow signed an agreement to establish a joint observation center in Nagorno-Karabakh as soon as possible.
The truce is seen as a victory for Azerbaijan and a defeat for Armenia, whose armed forces have been withdrawing as the agreement specified.