Two special military exercises were planned by the Turkish Defense Ministry and the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry for the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Türkiye and the 100th birth anniversary of Heydar Aliyev.
The exercise in Türkiye was named "Heydar Aliyev 2023 Exercise", while the exercise in Azerbaijan was named "Mustafa Kemal Ataturk 2023 Exercise".
"Heydar Aliyev 2023 Exercise", the first of the special exercises planned to improve the friendship, cooperation, and interoperability between the land forces of Türkiye and Azerbaijan, to share information and experience, and to improve the ability to conduct operations together, was held in Kars on April 19 – May 10.
The second in the series of special exercises, "Mustafa Kemal Atatürk 2023 Exercise", started on October 16, in Azerbaijan.
A large number of personnel from Türkiye, ATAK helicopters, F-16 fighter jets, as well as elements of the Special Forces Command, known as "maroon berets", are participating in the exercise, which is planned to be held at the beginning of the week on "Distinguished Observer Day".
The "Mustafa Kemal Atatürk 2023" exercise will be held on October 23-25 in Baku, Nakhchivan, and the regions liberated from Armenian occupation.
Türkiye was the first state to recognize the Republic of Azerbaijan, which declared its independence on August 30, 1991, on November 9, 1991. Diplomatic relations were established on 14 January 1992 and the Consulate General in Baku was upgraded to the level of Embassy. We also have Consulates General in Nakhchivan and Ganja in Azerbaijan. In addition to its Embassy in Ankara, Azerbaijan has Consulates General in Istanbul and Kars.
Türkiye's relations with Azerbaijan are multidimensional and strategic. Intensive mutual high-level visits are the most important driving force behind the relations. A tradition has been established that state officials of both countries visit the other country as a priority after taking office or following developments of symbolic importance.
In order to further strengthen bilateral relations, the High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council (HLSC) mechanism was established at the level of Presidents in 2010. In addition, with the Shusha Declaration signed on June 15, 2021, on the occasion of the visit of our President to Azerbaijan, our will to raise our relations to the level of the alliance was recorded, and the Shusha Declaration was ratified by the Parliaments of both countries on February 1-3 and entered into force.
The trilateral and quadrilateral cooperation mechanisms established with Azerbaijan are also important platforms contributing to regional stability, peace, and prosperity.
The Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, which constitutes the only land connection between Türkiye and Azerbaijan, has a special place in terms of our country's bilateral relations with Azerbaijan and constitutes our direct connection point with the Azerbaijani people.
Türkiye wishes to see the signing of a peace treaty and the establishment of good neighborly relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia following the 44-day Second Karabakh War, which resulted in the liberation of the Karabakh territories. In addition, our country supports the efforts to build infrastructure, increase prosperity, functionalize energy and trade lines, and strengthen regional connectivity in the Karabakh territories.