Republic Day - 102nd anniversary of the proclamation of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan
Exactly 102 years ago, on May 28, 1918, the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan (ADR) was proclaimed, which was the first parliamentary democracy in the Islamic Orient. The Republic, which had an area of 114,000 km², reached a number of important achievements within its 23-month existence. First of all, the independence of Azerbaijan was recognized at the Paris Peace Conference on January 11, 1920. The young independent Republic had diplomatic relations with a number of states, and 16 states had diplomatic missions in the capital city, Baku.
The National Council passed laws on the national coat of arms, the anthem and the flag. In addition, armed forces were established and the national currency of Azerbaijan - Manat was put into circulation. The first republic had a multi-party parliament and was one of the first states in the world to grant women the right to vote.
On April 28, 1920, the ADR was occupied by the Red Army and subsequently the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic (ASSR) - the second republic in the country's history - was founded. Although political and human rights were severely restricted in the Soviet Union, the ASSR was one of the most economically developed Republics of the Soviet Union. Especially starting from 1969, after Haydar Aliyev came to power, the ASSR achieved significant growth in the areas of oil industry, petrochemical, textile, heavy industry, mechanical engineering and many other fields.
On October 18, 1991, the National Council of Azerbaijan passed the Constitutional Act on Independence, and with that the era of the Third Republic began. The road from Soviet domination to independence was accompanied by a series of bloody events - "Black January", military conflict with Armenia over the Azerbaijani region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the Khojaly massacre.
Nowadays Azerbaijan is a modern state and the most economically powerful country in the South Caucasian region. The economy of the Republic offers favorable investment conditions for foreign investors. Azerbaijan maintains close cooperation with the Republic of Slovenia in many areas and interested to develop comprehensive bilateral relations.
The strategic advantageous geographical location allows Azerbaijan to capitalize the important trade links between Asia and Europe, North and South of the continent. To revive the historic Silk Road, the Azerbaijani government transformed the new port of Baku into an international transportation hub at the Caspian Sea. A free trade zone with its own autonomous legal regime is established around of the international port of Baku, where unique favorable conditions are offered to investors.
At the international level, Azerbaijan under President Ilham Aliyev is increasingly recognized as reliable partner contributing to European energy security, pioneering transregional economic projects and exposing the South Caucasus region to cooperation with and integration into European, Asian and global markets. Azerbaijan as Chairman of Non-Aligned Movement has initiated significant development projects and contributed to the security and stability in its neighborhood.
Azerbaijan has never been so strong economically and politically as its now and its nation is proud with the achievements and irreversible course towards strengthening the independence of the country.