Speech by Ilham Aliyev at the meeting with family members of National Hero of Azerbaijan Chingiz Gurbanov
09 february 2017, 12:00
On 29 December last year, your son Private Chingiz Gurbanov died heroically while defending his native land. Chingiz showed great courage and bravery. Faced with an enemy, he once again showed in an unequal battle with the enemy what an Azerbaijani soldier is capable of doing. He did not retreat like a coward, but stood face-to-face with a large subversive group. He fought to the last breath, killed several invaders and became a martyr.
We are proud of Chingiz. All Azerbaijan is proud of Chingiz. This once again shows that the citizens of Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani youth and Azerbaijani soldiers will never put up with the current situation. This once again shows that the state of Azerbaijan has strong soldiers. He showed great patriotism, professionalism and courage.
The insidious enemy showed the world its inhuman nature yet again. For more than a month it did not want to return the body of Chingiz. The Azerbaijani state made great effort. At the same time, our appeals to international organizations did not remain unanswered. Together, we were able to return Chingiz’s body to the homeland. A farewell ceremony was held in Baku. Then Chingiz was taken to his native Gusar District where he was honorably interred. I would like to take this opportunity to express my respect for all people of Gusar District once again. The people of Gusar gave Azerbaijan such a heroic son as Chingiz.
The purpose of the provocation which occurred in December is quite clear. In April last year the Armenian armed forces attempted to stage armed provocation against us. However, they regretted what they had done. The Azerbaijani army dealt them a blow they still can’t recover from. The April fighting shook not only the Armenian army, but also the Armenian government. Some top generals lost their epaulettes and posts. The Armenian society was dominated by panic and anxiety, and this continues to this day. The Azerbaijani army, the Azerbaijani state liberated some of the occupied lands from the invaders. Today these lands are being restored, and Azerbaijani citizens will soon return there.
After the April fighting Armenia tried very hard to give international color to this issue. It tried for the Collective Security Treaty Organization of which Armenia is a member to express its position on this issue although there were no legal grounds for that. We are on our own land. We do not lay claim to Armenian lands although we all know that the present-day Armenia was created on historically Azerbaijani lands. We will not give our lands to anyone. Therefore, the April fighting and the tension and confrontation on the line of contact are our internal affair. Nagorno-Karabakh is an integral part of Azerbaijan. The whole world recognizes Nagorno-Karabakh as such and this conflict can be resolved only within the territorial integrity of our country.
After April, Armenia tried different ways to engage other countries in the problem. But all of their efforts were in vain and did not yield any fruit. The purpose of the latest provocation on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border was precisely to engage the organization of which Armenia is a member in this affair. This did not happen this time either because thanks to people like Chingiz Azerbaijan showed great heroism. Armenia was convinced once again that even one Azerbaijani soldier can deal an irreparable blow to their manpower, and this is what happened.
We are defending our land. Our cause is fair. In this issue, the issue of settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the entire Azerbaijani society is united and demonstrates solidarity and unity. This is a common issue for us, and we are right. History and international law are on our side. In addition, Azerbaijan is much stronger than Armenia today not only in terms of economic and military potential. Such our sons as Chingiz demonstrate our advantage once again. He was faced with more than 10 saboteurs. Chingiz probably knew that he was going to die. He probably knew that he would die in an unequal battle. Despite this, he embraced death to defend his homeland and became a martyr.
All of Azerbaijan is proud of Chingiz. I am grateful to you for raising such a wonderful son for Azerbaijan. But Chingiz is not dead. He lives on in our hearts. He has been given the highest award for a soldier. He has been awarded the title of a National Hero. He is our hero. His name will be immortalized and he will always live in our hearts.
I invited you today. A three-day ceremony after the funeral of Chingiz was held yesterday. I invited you today to present this high award – the gold star of a National Hero.