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News > Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan Rejects French Presence in Non-European Territories

  • Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. Mar. 2, 2023.

    Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. Mar. 2, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/@DiplomasisiKamu

Published 2 March 2023

French-administered territories outside the European continent are "disgusting remnants of the French colonial empire," Ilham Aliyev said.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev on Thursday asked France to apologize for the "bloody colonial crimes" and "acts of genocide" it committed "against NAM member countries in Africa, Southeast Asia and elsewhere."

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During a speech at the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Contact Group summit in Baku on recovery after COVID-19, Aliyev referred to the French-administered territories outside the European continent as "disgusting remnants of the French colonial empire."

The 2019-2023 NAM president said that the international organization strongly supports, as always, the sovereignty of French overseas communities and territories. 

In this regard, the Azerbaijani President brought up "the unquestionable sovereignty of the Union of the Comoros over the island of Mayotte," as well as "the rights of the people of New Caledonia". 

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev called on the French government to "respect the rights of peoples in overseas territories."

In another part of his speech, the President of Azerbaijan said that African states and NAM member countries should have more representation in the UN Security Council.

Reform of the UN body has been discussed over the past few years, said Aliyev, who added that the UNSC "should be expanded to make it more representative and geographically fairer." According to the President, "it is reminiscent of the past and does not reflect today's reality."

Aliyev said the African continent should have permanent seats in the Council and the NAM organization at least one, as it brings together 120 states of the world (53 African countries). 

The NAM gathers countries that have proclaimed non-participation in blocs and politico-military groups as the basis of their foreign policy. It "should play a more visible and effective role on the international scene and actively participate in reshaping the new world order," Aliyev said in his speech. 

54 UN member states are from the African continent, which is represented in the Security Council by three non-permanent seats. Russia and the U.S. (permanent members), have supported the African Union's call for permanent representation for the sake of greater representativeness and democracy. 


Ilham Aliyev
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