Turkish National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar met with his Azerbaijani counterpart Zakir Hasanov in Zangilan, which was recently liberated from Armenian occupation following the Second Karabakh War, said a Wednesday announcement by Baku’s Defense Ministry.
Akar accompanied President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on his visit to Azerbaijan where the Turkish leader attended the inauguration of the International Fuzuli Airport on Tuesday.
At the meeting, Hasanov expressed his gratitude to fraternal Turkey for its moral support during the Second Karabakh War, as well as sharing his confidence in the further development and strengthening of bilateral partnership based on mutual trust.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s defense chief stressed the importance of this “historic meeting” with his Azerbaijani counterpart, noting that the strategic partnership between the two countries is based on ties of friendship and brotherhood.
Prospects for the development of military, military-technical and military-educational cooperation between Azerbaijan and Turkey were also discussed at the meeting.
Relations between the former Soviet republics of Azerbaijan and Armenia have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Upper Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.
New clashes erupted on Sept. 27, 2020, with the Armenian army launching repeated attacks on civilians and Azerbaijani forces and also violating several humanitarian cease-fire agreements.
During the 44-day conflict, Azerbaijan liberated several cities and some 300 settlements and villages that were occupied by Armenia for nearly three decades.
The fighting ended on Nov. 10, 2020, after the two countries signed an agreement brokered by Russia.