BAKU—At what was described as the largest military parade in Azerbaijan since the Soviet Union, Azeri president Ilham Aliyev on Sunday reiterated his intentions to reclaim Karabakh “by any means.”
“I am absolutely confident that our territorial integrity will be restored by any means. But we must be twice as stronger to achieve this,” he said.
Aliyev stressed that his country intends to continue diplomatic efforts to maintain its territorial integrity, but noted that Azerbaijan still lives in a “state of war.”
The president said that in the past few years Azerbaijan’s military spending has increased dramatically from $160 million in 2003 to $ 3.3 billion in 2011
He added that the military budget will remain the top priority of his country, until Armenia abandons “the lands of Azerbaijan” and signs a peace treaty.
“Nagorno-Karabakh has always been one and still remains an age-old Azerbaijani land. It is only temporarily under occupation, but this occupation cannot last long,” he added.