Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 82

Azerbaijani president Heydar Aliyev met in Brussels with NATO secretary-general Javier Solana to hand over the presentation document containing Azerbaijan’s proposals for its participation in the NATO Partnership for Peace program. A senior presidential aide said that the proposals envisage, among other things, NATO assistance in developing a modern civil defense system for Azerbaijan, providing modern communications equipment for Azerbaijan’s military, training an Azerbaijani contingent for participation in international peacekeeping operations, assisting Azerbaijan’s effort against terrorism "including Armenian-originated terrorism," and deploying NATO units for peacekeeping operations in Karabakh after conclusion of a political agreement on the principles of settling that conflict. The presidential aide said that Baku had considered military cooperation with Russia as an option for regaining sovereignty in Karabakh, but has refused to allow Russian troops to return to Azerbaijan and has found CIS collective security arrangements "purely declarative." Baku "pins special hopes on NATO to help restore Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity," the official said. (Interfax, April 25)

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