June 15—National Salvation Day—is one of the days that played a great and significant role in the destiny of the Azerbaijani people. On that very day, Azerbaijan made its way out of the recession and embarked on a path of progress. From this day forward, Azerbaijan began to pursue an independent policy and took a worthy place on a global scale.
National Salvation Day occupies a special place in the philosophy of national memory and the national identity of our people.
On June 15, 1993, the National Leader of the Azerbaijani people, Heydar Aliyev, fulfilled his saving mission by preservingthe independence of the country, eliminating the raging socio-political crisis in the Republic, and laying the foundation for sustainable development. On that day, Heydar Aliyev was elected chairman of the Supreme Soviet of Azerbaijan, and on June 24, he took the office of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
Despite great risks, the National Leader valiantly undertook the salvation mission. “My life and my activity will be devoted exclusively to preserving the independence of Azerbaijan and taking our country out of this difficult situation,” said the National Leader. He focused all his efforts on ensuring civil solidarity and stability in the country in order to solve the problems, and he achieved this goal.
Thus, the tension and confrontation that lasted for many years subsided, and our Republic was saved from the very real threat of civil war and collapse. In such a difficult political situation, Heydar Aliyev’s enormous potential became the guarantor for Azerbaijan’s independence and rallied the people around the ideas of Azerbaijan and Azerbaijanism.
The strategy for future development presented by the National Leader was successfully implemented in the following years. Since that time, the independent state of Azerbaijan has moved from anarchy to stability and development. Stability and peace were ensured in the country in a very short time, and Azerbaijan entered a new era of its history: the stage of actual independence, democracy, and development.
Thus, this important historical day is imprinted in the memory of the people as the Day of National Salvation and is celebrated as an official holiday by decree of the Parliament of the Republic of Azerbaijan in 1997.
President Ilham Aliyev characterized National Salvation Day as a turning point in the history of Azerbaijan. Indeed, the years between 1993 and 2003 went down in the history of Azerbaijan as the years of revival and development, and the period after 2003 is characterized as a continuation of the great path paved by Heydar Aliyev.
The policy pursued by President Ilham Aliyev granted Azerbaijan recognition as a country with a strong, principled stance and an independent political will, not only in the region but also in the international arena. The great victory achieved in the Second Karabakh War, also known as the “Patriotic War,” is the logical result of the successful continuation of Heydar Aliyev’s political line.
“I am happy to have fulfilled my father’s will,” President Ilham Aliyev said in his address to the Azerbaijani people. This is a testament to not only the victory we achieved on the battlefield but also the successful implementation of strategies for the development and protection of the state and statehood over the past 20 years.
In 2023, which is declared the “Year of Heydar Aliyev” in Azerbaijan, we celebrate National Salvation Day with double joy and pride. This year represents the sacred feelings of love for the Motherland and respect for our national and spiritual values, rallying around the ideology of Azerbaijanism, and the “Great Return” process rapidly implemented in the Karabakh region.
Today, the dream of every Azerbaijani is to turn the Karabakh region into one of the most beautiful areas in the world. To support reconstruction and restoration works implemented in liberated territories, the Milli Majlis (Parliament) of Azerbaijan discussed amendments to the law “On the State Budget of the Republic of Azerbaijan for 2023” and approved the doubling of the funds allocated for these purposes.
Speaking about the significance of this date, it is worth noting that June 15 is marked by another landmark event in the history of Azerbaijan. It was on this day that a joint declaration on allied relations between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Turkey was signed in the city of Shusha, which has a spiritual significance for us. The Shusha Declaration covers politics, international cooperation, economy, energy security, transport, culture, education, army building, and other strategic spheres.
Azerbaijan’s achievements in all fields give us full ground to confidently say that our independence is eternal, steadfast, and irreversible.
Mazahir Efendiyev Member of the Milli Majlis of the Republic of Azerbaijan