President of each Azerbaijani
Under the leadership of Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan has become a worthy member of the international community
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev marks his 57th birthday on December 24.
Regaining its independence in the late 20th century, Azerbaijan faced great difficulties in preserving its existence. At the times when our country faced the economic and political crisis of the early 1990s, the threat of civil war and the loss of independence, it found a savior in the face of great leader Heydar Aliyev. At the demand of the people, the genius personality returned to the political power from Nakhchivan to Baku. His far-sighted policy and experience of statehood saved Azerbaijan from the threat of extinction, creating stability and peace. The great leader’s oil strategy led to economic development and comprehensive reforms in our country. Thanks to a a number of measures carried out later, Azerbaijan became a worthy member of the world community. Since 2003, the political course of Heydar Aliyev has been successfully continued by his worthy successor, President Ilham Aliyev.
Ilham Aliyev was born in Baku on December 24, 1961. He entered the Moscow State University of International Relations (MGIMO) in 1977 and graduated it in 1982. Upon his graduation, Ilham Aliyev continued education as a postgraduate student at MGIMO and received a Ph.D. degree in history in 1985.
He taught at the Moscow State University of International Relations between 1985-1990. From 1991 to 1994 Ilham Aliyev was involved in private business sector, heading a number of industrial-commercial enterprises.
He was vice president, and later the first vice president of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR from 1994 to 2003. He was actively involved in implementation of then President Heydar Aliyev's oil strategy.
Ilham Aliyev was twice elected to the Milli Majlis (parliament) of Azerbaijan in 1995 and 2000, and resigned from this post in 2003 due to his appointment to the post of prime minister.
Ilham Aliyev has been presiding over the National Olympic Committee since 1997. He was re-elected to this post in 2016. He was elected deputy chairman of the ruling New Azerbaijan Party in 1999, first deputy chairman in 2001, and party chairman in 2005.
Ilham Aliyev headed the Azerbaijani parliamentary delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) from 2001 to 2003.
Ilham Aliyev was elected deputy chairman of PACE and member of the PACE bureau in January 2003.
He was appointed Prime Minister of the Azerbaijan Republic after his candidacy was approved by the country's parliament on August 4, 2003.
Ilham Aliyev was elected president of Azerbaijan on October 15, 2003, gaining over 76 percent of total votes. He assumed his post on October 31, 2003. Ilham Aliyev was re-elected as president for the second term, gaining 88 percent of votes in the election, held on October 15, 2008. He assumed the duties of the presidency on October 24, 2008.
On October 9, 2013, Ilham Aliyev was elected for a third term by an overwhelming majority of voters (84.54 percent) for the next five years. He assumed the post on October 19, 2013.
President Ilham Aliyev has always focused on Azerbaijan's domestic and foreign policy, which is based on national-state interests and is aimed at maintaining our territorial integrity, increasing our authority as a state in the international arena, economic development and improving the welfare of citizens. At meetings before the 2003 presidential election, Ilham Aliyev stressed that Azerbaijan's number one problem is the fair settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and the return of refugees and internally displaced persons to their homes. In parallel with the implementation of practical measures to solve the problem over the past years, the head of state has taken important steps towards addressing the social and housing needs of about 1 million refugees and IDPs. As promised, the president abolishd the refugee and IDP settlements during his presidency and provide new housing for people temporarily residing there. Significant work has been done to eliminate the negative consequences of the housing problems of martyr families, disabled people of Karabakh and IDPs.
So far, 290,000 displaced persons have been provided with new homes and apartments. As many as 20,000 IDPs or 5,800 families were provided with new homes only this year. In 2017, about 400 people among people disabled while protection of Azerbaijan's territorial integrity, independence and constitutional order, as well as families of martyrs were provided with apartments and housing. By the decree of President Ilham Aliyev dated August 2, 2018, 20 million manat were allocated for the construction of additional 300 apartments for the disabled and martyrs of the Karabakh war. This led to a 2.4 fold increase of the number of apartments to be provided to disabled Karabakh war veterans and families of martyrs in 2018. About 700 families of martyrs and Karabakh war veterans have been provided with housing this year and at least 800 apartments will be provided next year. In addition, the disabled Karabakh war veterans have been provided with state-owned cars. So far, 6,144 automobiles have been provided to war veterans.
As a result of President Ilham Aliyev's economic policy, Azerbaijan's gross domestic product (GDP) increased more than fivefold in 2003-2016. According to World Bank statistics, when Ilham Aliyev was first elected president in 2003, Azerbaijan's GDP was $ 7,276 billion, and in 2016 it was $ 37,848 billion. As a result of Ilham Aliyev’s policy, the volume of foreign investment and foreign exchange reserves has increased, and the non-oil sector has been developing in parallel with the oil sector in Azerbaijan.
The interests and well-being of the Azerbaijani citizens have always been in the spotlight. Thanks to the work done, Azerbaijan is known worldwide as a social state. In the last 15 years, wages have increased almost seven times, pensions more than 10 times, poverty has dropped from about 50% to 5.4%, unemployment has dropped to 5%. As a result of numerous measures and new enterprises created, about 1.5 million new jobs have been created over the past 15 years. Moreover, over 3,100 schools and more than 640 hospitals have been built and renovated in Azerbaijan over the past years, as well as 43 Olympic Sports Centers have been established in the regions. Being a regular participant at the Davos World Economic forums held in Switzerland in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018, President Ilham Aliyev has conveyed to the world Azerbaijan’s achievements, reforms, and the goals set before it. The President has always attracted attention with his confident, courageous and logical speeches from tribunes of the UN, NATO and the OSCE. The head of state has consistently defended national interests at all levels and pursued an independent foreign policy.
Undoubtedly, military construction is one of the most vital issues for a country living in war and whose lands are under occupation. Taking this into consideration, Supreme Commander-in-Chief, President Ilham Aliyev has carried out steady and decisive work to create a high-tech army, equipped with modern weapons from the early years. Thanks to the measures taken, today, Azerbaijan has one of the 50 most powerful armies in the world, and is capable of liberating our occupied lands from the enemy. Moreover, Azerbaijan currently produces modern weapons and equipment, as well as sells them to other countries. The establishment of the Ministry of Defense Industry of Azerbaijan is one of the most important steps taken in this direction. The Azerbaijani army demonstrated its strength and combat capabilities in April 2016 to both the enemy and the world. In order to suppress the Armenian provocation, ensure safety of the civilian population, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces command made a decision to take urgent response measures in the Aghdere-Tartar-Aghdam and Khojavand-Fuzuli directions. As a result, during the four days of fighting, Azerbaijani Armed Forces liberated the heights near the Talish village, as well as the Seysulan point, which could pose a threat to the safety of Goranboy district and the city of Naftalan. The Lele Tepe strategic height located in the direction of the Fuzuli district and allowing controlling a vast territory was taken under control. Also, as a result of the April fighting, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces ensured control over the roads in the Aghdere-Madaghiz direction. As many as 30 tanks, up to 15 armored guns and fortifications belonging to the Armenians were destroyed, 320 Armenian soldiers were killed and more than 500 servicemen of the enemy were wounded during the clashes. As a result of the successful counteroffensive, more than 2,000 hectares of territory were liberated from the Armenian occupation, even a larger territory came under the control of the Azerbaijani army. Azerbaijani Armed Forces have fortified the liberated lands.
As a result of successful actions in May 2018, the village of Gunnut of the Sharur district and the strategic heights of Khunut (2,065 meters), Gyzylgaya (1,683 meters), and Mehridag (1,869 meters), located around the village, came under the control of Azerbaijani units.
As a result of the persistent and purposeful activities of President Ilham Aliyev, significant progress was made in the implementation of Heydar Aliyev's foreign policy, as well as in the international exposition of the aggressive position of the Armenian invaders that violated the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. With a broad outlook, deep and comprehensive knowledge, and a high culture, Ilham Aliyev has earned worldwide respect and authority as a modern and flexible politician. He successfully defends the interests of Azerbaijan in all areas of the rapidly changing modern world, in the processes of globalization and integration, in all international meetings and at the highest level talks. Thanks to the successful domestic and foreign policy of Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan's role and authority in addressing international and regional problems is growing. It is not accidental that he is respected for his views and opinions even in the search for solutions to global crises.
Finally, President Ilham Aliyev has brought a new breath into our country through his thoughtful reforms and wise decisions and has put Azerbaijan among the developing countries of the world. As the head of state has repeatedly stated, his policy is aimed at the human factor, and at giving his people a better and more prosperous life. Serving his people and becoming the President of each Azerbaijani is a life philosophy for President Ilham Aliyev.