Today’s Zaman: Kudos to Azerbaijan, twice
Todays’ Zaman newspaper of Turkey published an article under the headline “Kudos to Azerbaijan, twice”. Among the countries offering to help Turkey related to the earthquake in Van one stands out. This was Azerbaijan. Abdülhamit Bilici, columnist of Today’s Zaman, wrote that the mobilization of people across Turkey in response to the earthquake in Van and Erciş has revealed not only the depth of our sense of ourselves as a nation, it has also proven that the brotherhood of Anatolia cannot be easily shaken. Among the countries offering to help Turkey, one stands out in two respects. First, this country sent aid materials before asking whether Turkey needed them or not. This noble-hearted country, which earned the titled of the first country to send aid to the quake site, was our sister country, Azerbaijan. Upon President Ilham Aliyev's instruction, Azerbaijan's Emergency Ministry sent two planes full of relief materials and 140 rescue workers to Turkey within just a few hours after the quake. Azerbaijani rescue workers worked day and night pulling 12 people victims and 60 corps from the rubble, and took 20-25 wounded victims to Baku for treatment. Essentially, this was what Haydar Aliyev's “One nation, two states” motto meant. It is state din teh article that Azerbaijan celebrates the 20th anniversary of its independence. Its independence began with wars, occupation, internal chaos and economic troubles. This aid sent by Azerbaijan marks a turning point, as it is proof of the great progress our sister republics have made despite the difficulties they have encountered rebuilding not only their states but also their national identities. Indeed, Azerbaijan has become the rising star of the Caucasus, even though 20 percent of its territory is under occupation, and it hosts more than 1 million refugees. Azerbaijan is responsible for 83 percent of the total economic activity in the South Caucasus. Abdülhamit Bilici with ceratin figures gives information of the recent economic achievements of Azerbaijan.