President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Supreme Commander-in-Chief Ilham Aliyev has visited the wounded servicemen who are treated at the Central Military Clinical Hospital of the Defense Ministry.
The head of state met with the soldiers who were wounded in the fighting on the line of contact.
President Ilham Aliyev: Hello, guys, how are you? How are things?
Soldiers: Good, Mr. President.
President Ilham Aliyev: And how are you?
Soldier: Good, thank you.
President Ilham Aliyev: How are doctors looking after you?
President Ilham Aliyev: When were you wounded?
Soldier: On 1 April.
President Ilham Aliyev: To your leg?
Soldier: Yes, to both legs.
President Ilham Aliyev: You have displayed great heroism. I express my gratitude to you.
Soldier: Thank you very much, Mr. President. I am ready to fight even now.
President Ilham Aliyev: But you have to recover first. Recover and recuperate. Doctors are taking good care of you. All conditions are available here. You fought for your country and were injured. The Motherland appreciates that. The Azerbaijani people are proud of you. As Commander-in-Chief, I express gratitude to you. Thank you.
Soldiers: Thank you.
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Meeting the wounded soldiers in another ward, President Ilham Aliyev said:
- Greetings! I want to thank you. You have heroically fought for your country and land. You defended the homeland and our territorial integrity. The Azerbaijani people are proud of you. You have been wounded in battle, but won.
Soldier: Mr. President, we dream of liberating our lands. Although we were wounded and are here, our thoughts are on the front line. We want to fights and liberate our lands.
President Ilham Aliyev: You have already done all that is necessary for the liberation of our land. The Azerbaijani army has given a fitting rebuff to the enemy and stopped its provocation. The current situation on the line of contact shows that the Azerbaijani army, the Azerbaijani soldiers and officers are capable of doing great things – they are heroes. The restoration of our territorial integrity is a sacred duty of every citizen of Azerbaijan. Sons like you multiply the glory of the motherland.
Where were you wounded?
Soldier: To my leg, but there is also a shrapnel wound.
President Ilham Aliyev: Have you been operated on?
Soldier: I have been today.
President Ilham Aliyev: And you?
Soldier: I have a gunshot wound.
President Ilham Aliyev: Where were you wounded?
Soldier: I have received a bullet wound in the shoulder.
President Ilham Aliyev: How are you feeling?
President Ilham Aliyev: I can see that your condition is slightly difficult. How are you feeling?
Soldier: Good, Mr. President. Everything is good.
President Ilham Aliyev: You have shown great heroism. The military operations you have carried out will become part of military books in the future. How are you feeling?
President Ilham Aliyev: Have you been shot in the arm?
President Ilham Aliyev: Recover quickly, guys. May Allah grant you recuperation. Recover soon and return to normal life. Thank you.
Soldiers: Thank you.
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Meeting the wounded soldiers in another ward, President Ilham Aliyev asked: How are you? How are you feeling?
Soldier: Excellent! Inshallah, I will recover and fight for the return of our lands again. Our brothers are waiting for us there, waiting for our help.
President Ilham Aliyev: Inshallah. You have done everything necessary. You fought heroically and were wounded.
Soldier: I am ready to do more, to the very end.
President Ilham Aliyev: You have shown great heroism. We are proud of the fact that Azerbaijan has such a remarkable young generation.
Soldier: Not an inch of our land must remain beneath the foot of the enemy. We will die, but do not allow that.
President Ilham Aliyev: That will not happen. Will he be operated on?
Military doctor: Yes, he will be. Pre-surgery has already been carried out. There will be final surgery.
President Ilham Aliyev: Will he fully recover?
Military doctor: Yes, he will be completely recovered. There are no bone and muscle injuries.
President Ilham Aliyev: What is the nature of your wound? How are you feeling?
Soldier: I have a shrapnel wound. I feel good.
President Ilham Aliyev: May Allah grant you recuperation. Recover quickly and return to normal life. We are proud of you. Thank you.
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Then the head of state met a group of family members of the wounded and martyrs.
President Ilham Aliyev said:
- As you know, on 2 April, Armenian occupiers committed yet another armed provocation against our country. They attacked our military positions, fired on our civilian population and villages. The heroic Azerbaijani army, our courageous soldiers and officers stopped the enemy provocation, gave a fitting rebuff to the enemy and further reinforced our edge on the line of contact. This is not the first time the Armenian invaders have resorted to such provocations. I have repeatedly said that they want to keep the occupied lands under their control forever and do not want peace. They act insincerely in the negotiations. They have broken all norms of international law and morality. They fire on civilians. A few days before these events they staged a provocation on the Azerbaijani-Armenian border, in the Gazakh direction. They killed our soldiers there. During the current events they constantly shell our villages. There are victims among our civilian population. About 300 houses are damaged. These are their actions. Azerbaijani soldiers and officers have never fought and never will fight against the civilian population. We are fighting on our own land. We are protecting our own land. Our cause is just.
The Azerbaijani army has again shown the enemy where it belongs. We have given it a fitting rebuff. We have full advantage today, too. Despite this, we have stated that we are ready to unilaterally restore the ceasefire on the condition that the other party will also observe the ceasefire. We do not want war. We want a peaceful solution to the issue. This, however, is a complex process. But be aware that all major international organizations support Azerbaijan's position. The UN, the OSCE, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Council of Europe – all of them have passed decisions and resolutions that reflect the truth and support our position. These decisions have not led to results though. But this is a legal basis for resolving the issue. On the other hand, Azerbaijan is well ahead of Armenia in the region in political and economic terms.
Let me repeat: although the negotiations remain fruitless, we are still ready for talks. The Armenian side has resorted to this provocation because the pressure on it from the international community and the mediators dealing with this issue is mounting. It is no secret what the situation is like – who is the occupier and who is the victim of occupation. This is why they resorted to this provocation to disrupt the negotiation process. As a result of this provocation, our people have martyred. There have been martyrs and those wounded. But you should know and the Azerbaijani people should know that the enemy has received a crushing blow. They only have themselves to blame.
Today I met with the soldiers who fought heroically. I met with our wounded guys and congratulated them. As a citizen, Commander-in-Chief and President, I expressed my gratitude on behalf of the Azerbaijani people and state. We are proud of them.
And I want to thank you for having raised such wonderful, skilled and brave patriots. Although they are wounded, they are still saying that they want to quickly check out and go back to the fighting zone. This is the greatness of the Azerbaijani people. It shows how decent, stable and patriotic our people are.
These kids grew up in the period of independence. They grew up under the flag of the independent Azerbaijan. They have a strong sense of national pride and national dignity. I have always said that all our young people should be patriotic and attached to the motherland. Your children, your loved ones are exactly like that. This is a great example.
I want to thank you again for having raised such sons for the motherland. They have a bright future. They have already proved that they are worthy citizens of our country. In the future, they will work in different fields – some in military, others in civil. But they have already proved that as worthy citizens they should and will build a future for themselves, a good life in Azerbaijan. We are proud of them and of their parents. Doctors told me that all the wounded will recover. Their health should and will be fully restored. Doctors are doing and will continue to do everything possible. I have come here to thank them and you, to say again that protection of the territorial integrity of our country is a sacred duty of the Azerbaijani people and every citizen of Azerbaijan. The territorial integrity of our country has never been and never will be the subject of negotiations. If the Armenian leadership realizes its mistakes and acts honestly at the negotiating table, I am sure there are possibilities for a peaceful solution of the problem are. In any case, we want it.
Let me repeat: Azerbaijan today declares that it unilaterally ceases all military operations, but on the condition that the other party does not take advantage of that. Let them stop, remain in place and not move. We are on our own land. We do not claim the land of another country. We did not occupy the land of another country, but we will not allow anyone to rule on our land. The Azerbaijani state is already a strong state, and its army is also strong. The brave young boys on treatment here are the most visible evidence of this.
Once again, I express my gratitude to you. May Allah grant you patience. I wish your loved ones, your children a speedy recovery.
Family members of martyrs and wounded: Mr. President, if necessary, we are ready to join our children in defense of our homeland. We always stand by you and support you. We are proud that we have a President like you. We all stand united behind you. Victory will be ours. We have raised our sons for the country.
President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you.