97 years pass since the creation of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic. AzTV employees have visited Nakhchivan in connection with this event which has a special place and is of high significance in the history of the Azerbaijani statehood.
The Sovietization in Azerbaijan, that started after the April occupation in 1920, did not pass by Nakhchivan either. In the background of the intense military-political struggles, the fate of Nakhchivan was decided. Eventually, Nakhchivan received the status of an autonomous republic within Azerbaijan in accordance with the Moscow treaty dated March 16, 1921, and Kars treaty dated October 13, 1921.
In January of 1921, a referendum was held in Nakhchivan, and 90% of the population voted for Nakhchivan to stay within Azerbaijan. After long discussions, on February 9, 1924, Nakhchivan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was established.
This was a historical event, because it put an end to the groundless claims of the Armenians over Nakhchivan. It showed the strategic significance of Nakhchivan. However, this event paved the way for the handing over of Azerbaijan’s native land Zangazur to Armenia. Azerbaijan was divided into two parts by this step.
The Soviet period has left a deep footprint in Nakhchivan’s life. During the first period of the Heydar Aliyev Administration, the industrialization process in Nakhchivan was speeded up; new facilities were constructed and commissioned. New human settlements were created; education, medical and cultural facilities were built.
Nevertheless, when Azerbaijan regained its independence, the appetite of the Armenians, who wanted to take advantage of the lack of the government in the country, rose. However, Nakhchivan was lucky that it had the true owner.
The Heydar Aliyev factor destroyed the Armenians’ plan to occupy Nakhchivan. Heydar Aliyev did not allow Nakhchivan to be occupied like Karabakh.
During his second term, national leader Heydar Aliyev never left Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic without attention. He did his best for this land to live and prosper during the blockade. The reconstruction and development works launched in the country stood out in Nakhchivan by their activity and creativity. Later, this development concept has gone down in history as a management model.
This development model was further enriched by President Ilham Aliyev. Nakhchivan’s self-defense reached the highest level during its blockade by Armenia. The 2018 Gunnut operation has gone down in history as another military success of Azerbaijan after the 2016 Aprel battles. Moreover, Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic reached economic independence, Nakhchivan’s economic development became of continuous nature; new facilities were opened; the non-oil sector began to develop. Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic’s energy independence was ensured; new power plants were commissioned here.
One of the most important steps was the creation of alternative energy sources in Nakhchivan. Attention was also paid to the development of agriculture which is the locomotive of food security. In 2020 alone, agricultural goods in the amount of more than 537 million AZN were manufactured in Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic. As a result of the execution of social projects, education and medical facilities here were renovated; new schools and hospitals were constructed; roads were paved in cities and villages. The existing infrastructure of the Nakhchivan International Airport was strengthened.
Nakhchivan’s autonomy is the historical achievement of the Azerbaijani people and state. This autonomy has given an opportunity for the century-old dreams of the Azerbaijani people to come true. The Nakhchivan population has always demonstrated the attachment to the national independence ideas and made great contributions to the restoration of Azerbaijan’s independence, its preservation and strengthening.