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Azer Khudiev: "Baku process" - 10-year experience of dialogue and cooperation

It was 10 years ago. It was then that at the beginning of December 2008 year in Baku for the first time a conference was held entitled "Intercultural dialogue - the basis of peace and sustainable development of Europe and neighboring regions". It was held on the initiative of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, and dozens of Islamic states took part in her work. Thus, the basis for a new format of cooperation was laid - "Baku process". It is an interactive international platform whose main purpose "is to develop a real mechanism for effective intercultural, interreligious and inter-civilizational dialogue. I also note that the "Baku process" is an essential component of Azerbaijan's cultural diplomacy.

Years are flying. And so, with the support of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, the Azerbaijani Embassy in France and the Permanent Mission to UNESCO 12 June 2018 years в Paris The 10-year anniversary of the Baku Process was celebrated. Over the years, within the framework of the Baku Process, impressive contributors to the conference and forums devoted to intercultural dialogue, world security issues, and the search for ways to collaborate. Experts from different countries of the world in one voice already state that the "Baku process" is capable of contributing to a new world order.

It is no secret to anyone that today, the most diverse countries in the world are faced with many challenges, problems of a global scale, including violation of the inviolability of borders and non-compliance with international law. The presence of such problems has the most negative effect on the issues of regional and global geopolitics, which in turn impedes the formation of a new world order.

According to UNESCO Deputy Director General Gu Xing, "Baku Process" is a unique platform that meets all the new requirements of a rapidly developing and equally rapidly changing world. Consequently, the "Baku process" plays its essential role in shaping the new world order. Given this, we would like to more specifically focus on some of the main points of the operation of such a unique platform.

Let's start with the fact that the Baku process represents a new geopolitical value created in Azerbaijan. It is based on the concept of Azerbaijani developed by ex-president AR Heydar Aliyev. In this ideological system, the interaction of cultures, the harmonization of the national and international ... the commitment of the Azerbaijanis to their cultural values ​​is necessarily complemented by their openness to the cultural values ​​of other peoples of the world. And precisely for this, the Azerbaijani society has always strived and strives for interaction and cooperation with other subjects of world history.

Azerbaijan's political elite in its activity takes into account this quality of our society, which forms the priorities of the foreign policy of our state. In this context, the "Baku process" is the transformation of the idea of ​​intercultural cooperation into the plane of the external political course. As the ten-year experience of the "Baku process" shows, this transformation is very successful and attractive. The same is evidenced by the figures. So, if at the beginning participants of the "Baku process" were 48 countries of the world, then over the past 10 years their number has grown to 100.

But the geopolitical significance of the "Baku process" is not limited to a quantitative increase in its participants. The most important thing here is that the international community is now more aware of the geopolitical value of its mission. The "Baku process" motivates the intercultural dialogue between the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Council of Europe (CE).

In addition, the "Baku process", as an interactive international platform, can be useful also for the development of regional cooperation. Undoubtedly, intercultural dialogue creates a suitable ground for implementing various projects: economic, environmental, energy, transit, cultural and many others.

It is clear that if there are good relations between countries and regions, if there are real mechanisms of mutual understanding, then there are good opportunities for cooperation in various fields. In this context, it would be logical to assume the positive impact of the "Baku Process" on the development of cooperation between the countries of the Black Sea-Caspian Basin.

In this geopolitical space, countries inhabited by both Muslims and Christians are located. Traditionally, friendly relations have been established between peoples of these countries based on mutual respect. Moreover, the countries of Central Asia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania, Ukraine and other states of the Black Sea-Caspian Basin successfully co-operate within the framework of various regional and global organizations. For example, the project "One Belt, One Way" involves almost all countries of the Black Sea-Caspian Basin, and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization unites 12 countries ...

There has already been a unique and positive experience for cooperation and dialogue between the countries of the Black Sea-Caspian Basin. At the same time, it is important to note one point. As the BSEC experience shows, even when some political and diplomatic relations between the Black Sea and Caspian Basin countries were interrupted, this organization played the role of a platform for dialogue between them. And here I want to note that the "Baku process" has even more opportunities to give a new impetus to the organization of dialogue and development of cooperation between the countries of the Black Sea-Caspian basin. Including because it covers the entire Islamic world and Europe.

I am deeply convinced that Azerbaijani-Ukrainian cooperation can be activated within this project. Our country, as the initiator of the "Baku Process", we think, together with Ukraine, which is one of the largest states of Eastern Europe, in the long run can develop joint projects that will be interesting both in the context of the formation of new regional forms of cooperation and in the an aspect of successful implementation of global projects, such as "One Belt, One Way."

We are confident that the Baku Process, a project that was born and successfully implemented on the initiative of President Ilham Aliyev, has great potential in organizing dialogue and cooperation on an international scale. The successful, ten-year experience of this process shows that it attracts an increasing number of participating countries. So why, Ukraine, which is friendly to Azerbaijan by the state, does not take a more active position on this platform? We think that all the participating countries of the "Baku Process" will benefit from it!

Khudiev Azer Hudayar OgloAmbassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Ukraine

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