8 Apr 2019 17:47

Baku denies Azerbaijani airspace closed for NATO air deliveries to Afghanistan

BAKU. April 8 (Interfax) - The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry has denied reports that the country's airspace is closed to aircraft of NATO countries, which are making air deliveries to Afghanistan.

Azerbaijan has refused permission to NATO aircraft to fly over its territory to Afghanistan since last March, Germany's Spiegel previously reported.

"These unsubstantiated accusations are not based on concrete facts. Azerbaijan has cooperated, is cooperating and is set to continue cooperation with NATO countries under the principles of partnership and international law," Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry spokesperson Leila Abdullayeva said.

The information published in the German press that the air corridor is closed brings about misunderstanding and indicates a certain biased attitude toward Azerbaijan, Abdullayeva said.

Azerbaijan will further consider NATO's requests in line with relevant procedure, she said. "Azerbaijan expects the German government to provide an appropriate answer to this question," she said.

"Azerbaijan does not allow anyone, including NATO, to use its territory under the pretext of a 'corridor'. This concerns providing an opportunity to use the territory of our country, including our highways, airspace, and maritime routes for deliveries as part of NATO's Resolute Assistance mission, to which Azerbaijan is party, as well," Abdullayeva said.

Azerbaijan and NATO have been pursuing this practice since 2001, she said.