ADA and Embassies of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia held International conference - PHOTOS | Eurasia Diary -

21 March, Thursday

ADA and Embassies of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia held International conference - PHOTOS

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Yesterday, on October 17, ADA University and Embassies of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia held an international conference on a topic “From National Independence to Eastern Partnership: Story of Cooperation between Azerbaijan and the Baltic States”. The topic of this conference was also devoted to the strengthening of ties between Azerbaijan and the Baltic States as well as commemorating 100 years independence of Azerbaijan, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia.

The conference was held at ADA University, where Ambassador of the Republic of Latvia to the Republic of Azerbaijan H.E Juris Mklakovs, Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to the Republic of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan H.E Valdas Lastauskas and Charge d’Affairs of the Republic of Estonia Mrs. Maija Tasa took part. Besides them, representatives of Azerbaijani, Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian communities, members of the Azerbaijani Parliament as well as the students attended the conference. The conference began at 15:00 (Baku time). The welcome speech was made by the Vice-Rector of ADA University Mr. Fariz Ismayilzade. Vice-Rector greeted all the guests of the conference and thanked the representatives of the Baltic States for the assistance in the implementation of this conference. Mr.Fariz Ismayilzade said the following words: “This year we are not only celebrating the 100th anniversary of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (1918), we also do celebrate the 100-year independence of the Baltic states. Today, we commemorate 100 years of friendship between our countries”. Mr, Ismayilzade also stressed the importance of relations between Azerbaijan and the Baltic states, He also underlined that one of the main topics of this conference is “What Azerbaijan and the Baltic states can learn from each other”.

After Mr. Fariz Ismayilzade delivered his introductory speech to the guests of the conference, Ambassador of the Republic of Latvia to the Republic Of Azerbaijan Juris Maklakovs made his speech. Mr. Maklakovs welcomed the guests of the conference and thanked Mr. Fraiz Ismayilzade for his warm welcome speech as well as mentioning good cooperation ties between Azerbaijan and the Baltic States. Latvian ambassador also touched upon the historic relations between Latvia and Azerbaijan. He said that the relationship between Azerbaijan and Latvia was laid with the establishment of the first Latvian Association in Baku, Azerbaijan dating to 1906.  He also added that at that time Latvian Association in Azerbaijan comprised almost 100 members and unfortunately today Latvian community living in Azerbaijan is still not so large. He also said that more than 2000 Azerbaijanis are living, working and studying in Latvia. Moreover, Latvian Ambassador also touched upon the issue of cooperation between the Baltic States and Azerbaijan. He said: “We have good political relations with Azerbaijan, but we have to raise our economic cooperation till the level of political”. At the end of his speech Mr, Maklakovs stated that Azerbaijan and EU established good relations in the frames of political, social, economic cooperation. He said that EU and Azerbaijan made huge progress in terms of environment protection, mobility, people to people contacts and energy efficiency. He concluded his speech by emphasizing the aim of this conference, He said:” We are here to identify the most important issues which combine 2 countries (Azerbaijan and Latvia) and what is the legacy of the 1st democratic states”.

After the speech of Latvian Ambassador, Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to the Republic of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan H.E Valdas Lastauskas and Charge d’Affairs of the Republic of Estonia Maija Tasa gave their speeches respectively. Lithuanian Ambassador thanked Azerbaijan for accepting their invitation to hold this conference. He also thanked ADA University and Mr. Fariz Ismayilzade for hosting this event, moreover H.E Valdas Lastauskas congratulated all the states taking part in the conference with the 100th anniversary, and moreover, he delivered personal congratulation to the Republic of Azerbaijan on 27 years of Azerbaijani Independence. Lithuanian Ambassador also touched upon the historical ties between Azerbaijan and Lithuania, claiming that they are friend countries.

The last welcome speech of the heads of embassies was made by Charge D’Affairs Mrs. Maija Tasa. She said the following words: “I would like to thank everyone who contributed to the realization of this conference. I am greatly honored to be here. We commemorate 100 years of Independence of our states. It was 100 years of sophistication and experience for our countries”. She also thanked students of ADA University and the students of the Baltic States studying in Azerbaijan. Mrs. Maija Tasa stated that International students contribute to the better future. She also said that there are few students’ from Estonia in Azerbaijani universities, moreover, she stressed that she hopes to see much more students from Estonia and promised that she will personally work on it to recruit more students from Estonia to ADA university as well as to other universities. At the end of her speech, she thanked the Center of EU studies for its assistance and concluded her speech with the following words: “ We all (Azerbaijan, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia) have great relationships and our purpose is to make World better”.

After the speeches of the Heads of Embassies, academicians representing each country delivered short lectures. The first lecture was made by Mr. Sarunas Liekis, Dean of the Faculty of Political Science and Democracy at Kaunas Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania. The topic of his lecture was “Founding of the Independent Baltic States and Today’s politics”. Mr. Liekis also touched upon the similarities between 3 nations in the face of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.

Following the speech of Lithuanian academician short lecture was read by Mr. Rein Oidekivi, Research Fellow at the International Centre for Defense and Security of Estonia. In his lecture on a topic “Struggle for Independence and challenges in (re)building a national security” Estonian speaker mentioned the relationship with the Soviet Union since the middle of the 20th century till the time when Soviets collapsed. He also touched upon the issue of contemporary relations between Estonia and the Russian Federation. At the end of his lecture, he said the following words: “We have no enemies, we are friends with everyone”.

The closing speeches’ of the conference were made by Mr. Karlis Bukovskis, Deputy Director and a researcher at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs and by  Dr. Elnur Sultanov who is the Dean of School of Public and International Affairs at ADA University.  The topic of Latvian lecture was “Eastern Partnership and today’s fundaments for economic cooperation (3 the Baltic States and Azerbaijan). In his lecture, Mr., Bukovskis told about the basics and basic trends of Baltics, cooperation with Azerbaijan as well as relations between the Baltic States and Russia. Dr. Elnur Sultanov in his turn told about the process of Azerbaijani integration into EU. He also noted that Azerbaijan got rid of all Soviet military bases in 1993; moreover, he touched upon the issue of the occupation of 20% territories by Armenian occupants. Dr. Sultanov also gave his assess to the politics led by the Baltic States. He concluded his speech by mentioning good relations between the countries taking part in the conference.

After the speeches made by Ambassadors and speakers, the member of the Parliament of Azerbaijan Asim Mollazade and the chair of the Azerbaijani delegation to Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Samad Seyidov gave their speeches concerning the relations between Azerbaijan and the Baltic States respectively. In their speeches, Mr. Asim Mollazade noted that Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia are the first countries to join the NATO from the former Soviet Union, whereas Mr. Samad Seyidov stated that the Baltic States are putting much effort for developing democratic values than a number of countries in European Continent.

The closing remarks were followed by a networking cocktail which concluded the conference held in ADA University,

Akber Bayramov

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