Foreign Ministry rejects allegations on presence of ‘third forces’ near Azerbaijani-Iran border
ANKARA (AA) – Azerbaijan on Monday rejected allegations of foreign intervention in its external policy, saying it pursues an independent foreign policy based on national interests.
In response to queries from local media about Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian’s recent remarks in an interview, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Leyla Adbullayeva emphasized the importance of “friendly and good-neighborly relations with neighboring countries.”
“We do not accept the allegations about the presence of any third forces near the Azerbaijan-Iran border … these views have no basis,” she said.
She added that such allegations were also made during the 44-day second Karabakh war with Armenia last year. “We stated then, and we reiterate now, that such allegations are baseless and no evidence has been presented to the Azerbaijani side so far.”
The spokesperson lamented that Azerbaijan has suffered decades of occupation of its territories, including its border with Iran, but it never “heard such a strong reaction from the friendly Iranian state to the occupation of part of our border.”
Abdullayeva said Baku believes that the liberation of Azerbaijani territories, among other things, “ensuring stability and security in the region must be in the interests of the Islamic Republic of Iran.” Several cities and nearly 300 settlements and villages were liberated from Armenia’s occupation last year.
Last month, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev had criticized the “illegal entrance and presence” of Iranian trailer trucks in Karabakh, a development termed as “surprising” by Tehran.