BAKU, Azerbaijan

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev on Wednesday visited the soldiers who were wounded in Nagorno-Karabakh amid the weeks-long armed clashes which ended with a peace deal.

Aliyev, accompanied by his wife Mihriban Aliyeva, thanked the soldiers for their gallant efforts.

He said that the “Karabakh War II” will be recorded in history as Azerbaijan’s epic victory.

Noting that people are out celebrating on the streets, Aliyev said: “This victory is being celebrated in Turkey as well. It is natural. Because we are one nation, two states.”

“I have thanked my brother [Turkish President] Recep Tayyip Erdogan many times. Turkey’s spiritual and political support played an important role in our victory. Azerbaijani people greatly appreciate the support and solidarity that Turkey extended,” he added.

Aliyev further remarked that a new era has begun in Azerbaijan. He added that the government will do everything for the recovery of the wounded soldiers, providing them a good life afterward, as well as solving the problems of the families of the martyrs.

Relations between the ex-Soviet republics have been tense since 1991 when the Armenian military occupied Upper Karabakh, also known as Nagorno-Karabakh, a territory recognized as part of Azerbaijan.

Fresh clashes erupted on Sept. 27, and the Armenian army continued its attacks on civilians and Azerbaijani forces, even violating humanitarian cease-fire agreements, for 44 days.

Baku liberated several cities and nearly 300 of its settlements and villages from Armenian occupation during this time.

On Nov. 10, the two countries signed a Russia-brokered agreement to end fighting and work toward a comprehensive solution.

Turkey has welcomed the truce, which is a result of Baku’s military successes and has given it an upper hand over Yerevan to resolve the three-decade-long dispute.

*Writing by Dilan Pamuk in Ankara

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