First VP Mehriban Aliyeva chairs meeting on resettling refugee, IDP families

First Vice-President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyeva has chaired a meeting on the resettlement of refugee and IDP families who are temporarily settled in dormitories in Baku and Sumgayit.

Azerbaijan’s First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva noted that the meeting was dedicated to addressing the problems of Azerbaijanis displaced from their native lands. She said the issue has been in the focus of the Azerbaijani government’s attention for more than 20 years.

Mehriban Aliyeva hailed the measures taken towards addressing social, educational, employment, housing and medical problems of Azerbaijanis.

Azerbaijan’s first vice-president noted that nearly 100 state-of-the-art residential complexes for displaced persons have been built in the country’s districts, 250,000 IDPs have been provided with new housing so far.

Mehriban Aliyeva said 150 schools, 60 medical centers and kindergartens have been built in these settlements.

“Necessary steps have been taken to ensure the employment of these people,” she said.

“However, many of the displaced families are still living in damaged and destroyed buildings,” added Mehriban Aliyeva.

The first vice-president underlined the need for taking extra steps to speed up work to improve their living conditions.

Azerbaijan’s First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva noted the importance of resettling refugees and internally displaced persons in new apartments in the cities of Baku and Sumgayit.

She also noted that new apartments should be allocated in the new buildings for refugees and IDPs which are being constructed in Baku and Sumgayit.

The meeting featured a presentation about the work done to address problems of refugees and IDPs so far.

According to the statistics and evidence provided in the presentation, the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict caused damage worth more than $800 billion to Azerbaijan’s economy. President Ilham Aliyev has signed 55 decrees and executive orders to address social problems of refugees and IDPs and to improve their living conditions since 2003. Ninety-five residential settlements, 151 schools, 58 culture centers, 59 healthcare centers and other infrastructure facilities were built in the country from 2001 to 2016. These measures helped to dramatically reduce poverty among IDPs from 75 percent to 12 percent.

Then Azerbaijani deputy prime minister, Chair of the State Committee for Refugee and IDP Affairs Ali Hasanov, Head of Baku City Executive Authority Hajibala Abutalibov, Head of Sumgayit City Executive Authority Zakir Farajov addressed the event.

In her closing speech, Azerbaijan’s First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva said great work has been done to build and reconstruct kindergartens.

“But, unfortunately, in some cases these kindergartens do not operate to their full capacity. To tackle this problem, we need to set up a working group that would involve experts of the Ministry of Finance and Baku City Executive Authority.”

“Today our main target is to provide 4,000 IDP families in Baku and Sumgayit with new apartments. The families living in the most damaged and hardest conditions should be resettled in new buildings as soon as possible,” Azerbaijan’s first vice-president said.

Mehriban Aliyeva instructed district executive authorities to put forward proposals on offering employment to refugees and IDPs.

Mehriban Aliyeva expressed her confidence that the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict will be fairly resolved, the country’s territorial integrity will be restored, and refugees and IDPs will return to their native lands.