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İstiqlal Bəyannaməsi bütün türk-müsəlman dünyasında, ümumiyyətlə bütün Şərqdə ilk dəfə olaraq demokratik parlamentli müstəqil Azərbaycan dövlətinin yaradılmasını xəbər verirdi. Azərbaycan Milli Şurasının İstiqlal Bəyannaməsində deyilirdi:

1. Bu gündən etibarən Azərbaycan xalqı hakimiyyətə malik olduğu kimi, Cənub-Şərqi Zaqafqaziyanı əhatə edən Azərbaycan da tam hüquqlu müstəqil bir dövlətdir.

2. Müstəqil Azərbaycan dövlətinin idarə forması Xalq Cümhuriyyətidir.

3. Azərbaycan Xalq Cümhuriyyəti bütün millətlərlə, xüsusilə qonşu olduğu millətlər və dövlətlərlə mehriban münasibətlər yaratmaq əzmindədir.

4. Azərbaycan Xalq Cümhuriyyəti milliyyətindən, dinindən, sinfindən, silkindən və cinsindən asılı olmayaraq öz sərhədləri daxilində yaşayan bütün vətəndaşlarının hüquqlarının təminatçısıdır.

5. Azərbaycan Xalq Cümhuriyyəti öz ərazisi daxilində yaşayan bütün millətlərin sərbəst inkişafı üçün geniş imkanlar yaradır.

6. Müəssislər Məclisi toplanıncaya qədər Azərbaycanın başında xalqın seçdiyi Milli Şura və Milli Şura qarşısında məsuliyyət daşıyan Müvəqqəti hökumət durur.

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2007, 28 May – Respublika Günü münasibətilə mayın 25-də “Gülüstan” sarayında Azərbaycan Prezidenti İlham Əliyevin adından rəsmi qəbul təşkil olunmuşdur.

 

AZƏRBAYCAN PREZİDENTİ İLHAM ƏLİYEVİN NİTQİ

– Hörmətli xanımlar və cənablar!

Hörmətli qonaqlar!

İlham ƏliyevMən sizin hamınızı Respublika Günü münasibətilə ürəkdən təbrik edirəm. Bu gözəl bayram ərəfəsində bütün Azərbaycan xalqına xoşbəxtlik, yeni-yeni uğurlar arzulayıram.

1918-ci il mayın 28-də müsəlman aləmində ilk demokratik respublika – Azərbaycan Xalq Cümhuriyyəti yaranmışdır. Respublikanın ömrü uzun olmadı. Ancaq o qısa müddət ərzində çox işlər görüldü. Respublikanı yaradanların niyyətləri çox gözəl idi. Azərbaycanı azad, müstəqil ölkəyə çevirmək, Azərbaycanı dünya birliyinə daxil etmək və ölkəmizi hərtərəfli inkişaf etdirmək. Əfsuslar olsun ki, bu niyyətlərin böyük əksəriyyəti icra olunmamış qaldı. İki ildən sonra Azərbaycan Xalq Cümhuriyyəti süqut etdi.

Azərbaycan xalqı və Azərbaycan dövləti respublikanın fəaliyyətinə və onu yaradanların xatirəsinə çox böyük hörmətlə yanaşır. Bu hörmətin əlaməti olaraq bu gün biz Bakının mərkəzində Azərbaycan Xalq Cümhuriyyətinə həsr edilmiş abidənin açılışını qeyd etdik. O gözəl abidə paytaxtımızın gözəl guşələrinin birində – İstiqlaliyyət küçəsində ucaldıldı.

(daha&helliip;)

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In the beginning of the 20th century, Americans had a limited understanding of Azerbaijan. Even at the end of the 19th century, when oil was discovered in the area around Baku and the Apsheron Peninsula, Azerbaijan was viewed as a “distant province” of Russia.
The latter half of the 19th century was a time of great economic development for Azerbaijan, based largely on the discovery of huge oil reserves. Considered the birthplace of the modern oil industry, the oil resources in Azerbaijan account for over half of total world oil output. And more than 95 percent of the oil factories in Russia were secured by resources from four major oil fields in Azerbaijan Guneshli, Chirag, Azeri and Kapaz fields.

Baku attracted investors and oil developers from all over the world, among them the wealthy Alfred Nobel and his brothers. Other leading oil firms operating in the Baku area at the eve of World War I included the Primary Russian Oil Company, the English-Dutch company, Shell, and the emerging French firm Rotshild. Toward the end of the wax; however, English, French and German companies controlled the majority of the oil shares in Baku. As this market grew, American oil companies began to show an interest in Azerbaijan.

POST-WAR EVENTS IN TRANSCAUCASUS
The emergence of the United States in the oil industry at the end of the war not only demonstrated the strength of the military doctrines, but also the power of diplomacy. In contrast to its European colleagues, US interests in the Transcaucasus rose, especially alter the October coup-an event which signaled the defeat of the Russian Empire and the creation of the short-lived Transcaucasus Federation that was created in November 1917 by member states Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia.

WILSON MAKES “FOURTEEN POINTS” SPEECH
Wilson’s Fourteen Points speech, which was delivered to a joint session of Congress on January 8, 1918, clearly stated that self-determination for Russia included opposition to the detachment of her territory by any of the belligerents, Allied or enemy, and preservation of the right of the Russian people to determine their own government without any outside interference. His speech was enthusiastically welcomed by the Azerbaijani intelligentsia, who considered the address the Solution to quickly ending the war-a war which, they noted, would change the map of the world.

CREATION OF AN INDEPENDENT REPUBLIC
With the collapse of tsarist rule in Russia at the end of World War I, Azerbaijan, along with the other Caucasus nations of Armenia and Georgia, seized the OPportunity to declare independence. On May 28, 1918 the people of Azerbaijan established their own independent state, the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan, which was run by an eight-member Azerbaijani National Council. The Azerbaijani intelligentsia, believing that Wilson was the defender of the rights of Oppressed nationalities, anticipated America’s quick recognition of their independence. As Azeri Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Ziyadhan then wrote, “The American movement for humankind by her leader Wilson has opened up bright new opportunities for all of humanity.”

(daha&helliip;)

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Baku old oil wells

On the historic day of May 28, 1918 Azerbaijan declared independence. Thus, after over than 100 years, national statehood was re-established and Azerbaijan’s government started creating its own state institutions. However, in spite of the energetic steps taken by the government, this process was complicated and impeded by the military-political situation it faced at the same time. Even after the declaration of independence, a diarchy existed in Azerbaijan: the city of Baku and Baku province were controlled by the Bolshevik regime. It is clear enough that the Bolsheviks, led by Shaumyan, were completely controlled and directed by Soviet Russia; this explains the fact that the interests of Baku’s economy and especially the oil industry, were subjected to Russian interests.

On May 1, 1918 The Baku Soviet of Peoples Commissars published a declaration claiming that it would apply all the decrees of the Soviet government in Russia (1). Soviet Russia, covered with the fire of civil war was in great need of fuel. It would have been impossible to achieve the military victory on the Russian fronts without the oil from Baku.

Therefore Lenin characterized the issue of nationalizing of the oil industry as the highest priority from the very first day of the Communist regime. He instructed the Baku Soviet to provide the oil supply. His telegram of May 28, 1918 stated that “…most importantly, the oil production should be secured.” (2) In two weeks he sent another telegram ordering the Baku Soviet to ” take necessary measures to rapidly export the oil products from Baku.” (3)

(daha&helliip;)

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Dear Mamed Hasan,

There are a lot of obstacles on our way to send telegrams about the declaration of independence of Azerbaijan . I send you the text of telegram in Russian and French in order for you to broadcast it to Constantinople and from there farther. You can sign the telegram as the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Nasib bek and Sultanov have gone to Elizavetpol to inform and prepare the people. We have resolved all disputes with Armenians and they will take the ultimatum and finish the war. We ceded Irevan to them.

Mark the telegram about independence as gotten from Tiflis and in this meaning deliver it to Constantinople. If you can inform us whether you succeeded in sending the telegram and how Turkey thinks about it officially.

At the end of the French text of the telegram add that the temporary residence of the Government will be in Elizavetpol.

Your F. Khoyski

May 29, 1918.

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The first independent Republic of Azerbaijan existed for 23 months, between May 28, 1918, and April 28, 1920. Without a doubt, the republic existed during the most turbulent, unstable and complicated period of local history in the 20th century. Ethnic conflicts and continuous wars with Armenia, aggravated by the collapse of the Russian Empire, communist coups, civil war in Russia and the consequences of WW I, brought the region of the Caucasus into complete turmoil. This, in turn, facilitated the occupation of the entire region by the Soviet Army.

However, despite the unfavorable historical background, the Azerbaijan Republic of 1918-1920 became the first secular state in the Orient with the first European-like Parliament and the first Cabinet of Ministers. It was also the first to adopt other Western-like institutions, which were implemented for the first time in the Moslem World.

The experience of the first Republic (also known as the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic) seems particularly precious nowadays, when almost 80 years later, Azerbaijan is trying its best to create an independent state based on the finest democratic traditions laid in 1918-1920.

1917

October 25. Communist (Bolshevik) coup in Petrograd (St. Petersburg), Russia, which brings about the collapse of the Russian Empire.

November 2. Baku Soviet, the Communist council of the so-called Baku Commissars, led by Stepan Shaumyan (an Armenian communist), becomes the supreme authority in Baku.

1918

February 23. Transcaucasian Seym (Parliament) is established in Tbilisi (Georgia) as the Legislative power in the Transcaucasus, with Azeris, Georgians and Armenians holding equal representation.

March . Influence of the Musavat Azerbaijani National Party increases, causing tensions among the Communist leadership of the Baku Soviet, resulting in ethnic hostilities and the massacre of about 10,000 Azeris in Baku. The massacre is carried out between the Red (Communist) Army and the Dashnak Armenian armed units. Soviet power in Baku is completely destroyed.

April 22. The Federation of the Republic of Transcaucasia names ministerial posts in Tbilisi, which are distributed between Azeri, Armenian and Georgian representatives. Tensions within this federation develop due to German support of the Georgians, British support of the Armenians and Turkish support of the Azeris. The situation is further aggravated by World War I, and by the Civil War in Russia between the Red Army of the Communists and the White Army of the Monarchists.

May 26: The Republic of Georgia declares its independence, causing the collapse of the Transcaucasian Federation.

May 28. Azerbaijan and Armenia declare independence. The formation of the first Cabinet of Ministers. Fatali-khan Khoyski becomes Azerbaijan’s first Prime Minister.

June 4. Peace and Friendship Agreement is signed between Azerbaijan Republic and Turkey. Establishment of the Turkish Military Mission in Ganja.

June 12. The Second Cabinet of Ministers is formed by Khoyski in Ganja (which, at that time, was the capital of the Republic of Azerbaijan, as Baku was still under control of the Communist government).

June 16. Military offensive by the Communist Baku Soviet against the Azeri government in Ganja is repelled with the help of Turks.

June 27 – July 1. Geokchay Battle. Azeri and Turkish troops defeat the Red Army and Dashnak Armenian units.

(daha&helliip;)

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