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President Ilham Aliyev: “The Zoroastrian temple, mosque, catholic church, orthodox church, Armenian church and synagogue are all our national heritage”

“After the war ended, the situation changed. Why? Because it was a kind of a perception that Armenian historical heritage could be damaged. But, the fact that 65 out of 67 mosques were knocked down by Armenians is absolutely ignored, as if this is not historical heritage and as if it is not religious heritage. That is the situation which we are facing. But, now, after thousands of international representatives visited Shusha and all of them saw that the Armenian church is untouched, on the contrary, it will also be restored, unlike the mosques which Armenians destroyed, now the interest of UNESCO to come to the region goes down”.” President of the Republic of Azerbaijan llham Aliyev has said at the international conference themed “South Caucasus: Development and Cooperation” at ADA University. The head of state has emphasized that they will have to report about 65 destroyed mosques: “They will have to report that the Armenians kept pigs and cows in Aghdam Mosque. They will have to report that Armenian, Christian and Alban religious heritage is untouched”.

The president has noted that we will never do it, and we never did it. “Here in Baku, you can find the Armenian church in the city's center. We keep there 5,000 Armenian books. What do we see in Yerevan? They changed the name of an Azerbaijani mosque. They called it a Persian mosque. The mosque in Shusha they also called a Persian mosque. They even invited specialists from Iran to make some repairs to change its origin. There was a diplomatic note, and the Iranian ambassador then was invited to the Foreign Ministry, and we demanded to end that. Because that was also part of the legitimization of the destruction of Muslim heritage, this is the difference. Our religious and historical heritage in Azerbaijan belongs to all people of Azerbaijan. The Zoroastrian temple, mosque, catholic church, orthodox church, Armenian church and synagogue are all our national heritage, and we preserve them. Everybody who visits Baku, Shusha, Guba and other places can see it. But, of course, this double-standard approach is something we are already used to living with, unfortunately”- the head of state has added.