President Aliyev receives UN Population Fund Award

By: Nigar Orujova

Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev was presented an award from the UN Population Fund by Babatunde Osotimehin, the Executive Director of the United Nations Population Fund and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations, in Baku on November 12.

The award recognizes the Azerbaijani president’s display of political determination, his tireless activities, and tremendous efforts toward fulfilling the tasks set by the UN International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo in 1994. It also acknowledges his support for the Sustainable Development Program in Azerbaijan, as well as his contributions to the improvement of the healthy living conditions of women and the youth.

Osotimehin, who is on a visit to Baku, thanked the head of state for his fruitful cooperation with the UN and praised the conditions created by the government of Azerbaijan for the development of bilateral relations.

The executive director recalled Azerbaijani national leader Heydar Aliyev’s attendance at the 1994 Cairo conference, noting that Azerbaijan had made great strides in the fields of human rights and children’s rights and had attached importance to gender equality and the protection of women’s and mothers’ rights. He hailed the work done in Azerbaijan on this front.

Touching upon the country’s favorable geographical location and accomplishments, Osotimehin emphasized Azerbaijan’s role in strengthening peace and security in the region.

Pointing out that the UN Population Fund was interested in expanding cooperation with Azerbaijan, he stressed the importance of joint programs and cooperation with UN institutions.

The Under-Secretary-General noted that the organization wishes to cooperate with Azerbaijan in education, healthcare, information and communications technologies, and other spheres.

President Aliyev thanked the executive director and noted that the social policy had always been one of the key priorities for Azerbaijan since it regained its independence, adding that meeting the country’s needs has been its primary focus.

Emphasizing the role of the economy in carrying out the social policy, the head of state said the execution of social programs was impossible without a strong economy.

President Aliyev further noted that economic reforms were being enacted alongside social programs without any negative impact on the everyday life of the country’s people. The head of state said that as a result, growing economy has been accompanied by better living conditions of people

Touching upon the reforms in the field of healthcare, the president said more than 500 modern hospitals had been built in the country and supplied with state-of-the-art medical equipment.

Noting that every year, millions of people receive a free medical examination, President Aliyev described this as an essential part of the social policy being applied in the country.

The president said Azerbaijan was keen to enhance cooperation with the UN and its institutions in a variety of areas.

First lady meets UNFPA Executive Director

Azerbaijan’s First Lady, President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mehriban Aliyeva and the vice-president of the Foundation, Goodwill Ambassador of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization Leyla Aliyeva, received a delegation led by Osotimehin on the same day.

The First Lady said the Foundation was one of the largest and most active non-governmental organizations in the country and in the entire region.

She also noted that social problems, especially those faced by families, women, and children were key priorities for the Foundation.

Touching upon the joint projects implemented by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, State Committee for Family, Women, and Children’s Affairs and the UNFPA, Mehriban Aliyeva said women in Azerbaijan have played an important and active role in the country’s socio-political life throughout its history.

“Azerbaijan granted the voting right to women before several European countries did,” pointed out Aliyeva.

The First Lady stressed the significance of starting new projects and highlighted Azerbaijan’s accomplishments in addressing the problem of domestic violence.

She provided insight into the projects aimed at preventing violence against women and ensuring their social security and rehabilitation in Azerbaijan.

Mehriban Aliyeva also expressed confidence that the UNFPA Executive Director’s visit would contribute to bilateral cooperation, saying the Heydar Aliyev Foundation was ready to continue their collaboration.

For his part, Osotimehin praised the activities of the Foundation and said he was proud to cooperate with it.

Later, the Executive Director presented a Memorial Diploma and a keepsake of the UNFPA to Mehriban Aliyeva in recognition of her true commitment to and extraordinary efforts in advancing gender equality in Azerbaijan, promoting the rights of women and children to achieve the highest attainable standard of health, and fostering goodwill and cooperation.

Women’s rights on the agenda

Following this meeting, Babatunde Osotimehin also met with Chairperson of the State Committee for Family, Women, and Children’s Affairs Hijran Huseynova.

Huseynova highlighted the work done to prevent child marriage in the country, and informed about the Support Centers of the Committee in various regions of Azerbaijan.

She also noted that Azerbaijan supported the UN’s Global Agenda on women’s rights and spoke about the prospects for cooperation and the new initiatives in the field of gender equality.

Osotimehin, in turn, praised the role of the country’s leadership in ensuring the successful socioeconomic development of Azerbaijan and stressed the importance of promoting women’s rights as well as improving their access to medical and social services.

They discussed the prevention of domestic violence, studying the UN experience with women’s, families’, and children’s issues, and the establishment of bilateral ties and the strengthening of international cooperation.

During the visit of the UNFPA delegation, the Fund signed a Memorandum of Understanding with ADA University of Azerbaijan to create broad opportunities for efficient cooperation in managing projects and programs.

Osotimehin also delivered a report on the challenges created by the growth of the world’s population to the teacher-student staff of the university.


Related Post
PESHAWAR, -- At least 10 people were killed and 30 others injured on Friday when
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu had meeting with the members of presidential council of Bosnia
The report said that the police operation, which is seen the part of the ongoing