President Ilham Aliyev: Zangazur corridor can become a new transport project for Eurasia
President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev stressed the importance of opening of the Zangazur corridor as he was interviewed by CNN Turk TV channel.
“Of course, the opening of this corridor serves many purposes. Azerbaijan and Turkey will join a new transport project. As you know, the official opening ceremony of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway took place in Baku four years ago. Thanks to this railway, we were linked with Turkey. The Zangazur corridor will be the second connection. This will usher new opportunities for us. At the same time, Azerbaijan will be connected to the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, which is an integral part of it, by rail. We also demand that a highway be built - in the Mehri region of Western Zangazur, which is under Armenian control. This is absolutely necessary.
Unfortunately, Armenia is opposed to that. Until recently they had been opposed to the opening of the Zangazur corridor. Just that a few days ago, some positive opinion was expressed there that they do not object to it. However, the full operation of the Zangazur corridor requires both a railway and a highway. We should be able to get in a car in Baku and comfortably go to Turkey and Nakhchivan,” the head of state emphasized.
“This will also create new opportunities for countries of the region. Turkey will be able to transport its goods to Central Asia using a shorter route way. So it can become a new transport project for Eurasia. We have already put forward this initiative. We have also named this corridor the Zangazur corridor. It has already been included in the international lexicon. I know that the European Union is also very positive about this issue. During a recent visit of the President of the European Council, Mr. Charles Michel, to Baku, we had a broad exchange of views on this issue, and they, of course, strongly support this project.
In other words, this will be a new opportunity for Turkey, Azerbaijan, the region and Armenia. I have already said that they can connect with Russia and Iran by this railway. Because the construction of the Armenian-Iranian railway has been discussed for 20 years perhaps. And yet nothing is happening because this project requires at least $3 billion. However, they can use the territory of Nakhchivan – there is already a railway line between Nakhchivan and Iran,” President Ilham Aliyev noted.