The 26th Congress of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) was held in Istanbul, Turkey, from September 19 to October 7, 2016. The Azerbaijani delegation led by Minister of Communications and High Technologies Ramin Guluzade took part in the Ministerial Conference held within the framework of the 26th Congress of the UPU.
This congress proved to be very successful for Azerbaijan. Thus, Azerbaijan was nominated to the Postal Operations Council – one of two Supreme Bodies of the UPU – and was eventually elected a member of this Council.
At the same time, most of the 21 proposals made on behalf of the Azerbaijan Postal Administration were accepted at the Congress. Moreover, several of the accepted proposals were sent to the next year’s session of the UPU for further discussions.
Minister of Communications and High Technologies Ramin Guluzade delivered a speech at a session of the Ministerial Conference, which was held under the theme of "The role of postal services in promoting trade". He informed the gathering about reforms implemented in Azerbaijan’s postal sector, ongoing and perspective projects carried out in the country with the aim of promoting e-commerce and developing financial services in the postal sector.
Also, with the framework of the Ministerial Conference, Ramin Guluzade held bilateral meetings with Director General of the Universal Postal Union Bishar Hussein, Minister for Transport, Shipping and Communications of the Republic of Turkey Ahmet Arslan, Minister of Information and Communications Technology of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mahmoud Vaezi and Deputy Minister of Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation Rashid Ismayilov.
During the meetings, new prospects for joint cooperation in the spheres of telecommunications, postal services, satellite communications, high technologies and broadband internet services were discussed.
The Azerbaijani delegation made a statement on behalf of the Republic of Azerbaijan at the 26th Congress of the Universal Postal Union.
The statement was included in the official document titled “Declarations made on signature of the Acts”, which was approved by the Congress.
The text of the statement:
The Republic of Azerbaijan is one of the fully authorized members of the Universal Postal Union and is entitled to deliver postal services on the internationally recognized territory of the country pursuant to the Universal Postal Convention and other international legal documents. However, 20 percent of the internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding administrative regions, is under the occupation of Armenia and therefore facing obstacles with respect to the delivery of postal services.
Resolutions Nos 822 (30 April 1993), 853 (29 June 1993), 874 (14 October 1993) and 884 (12 November 1993) of the Security Council of the United Nations, as well as decisions and resolutions of other international organizations on the immediate, full and unconditional release of the occupied territories of Azerbaijan from Armenian invaders, have remained unfulfilled.
The occupation has resulted in extensive damage to the country's economy, including the postal sector. The working group established in order to assess the losses and damages incurred by the Republic of Azerbaijan is carrying out the evaluations.
It is impossible to comply with article 8 of the Universal Postal Convention concerning the circulation of postage stamps on the territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan occupied by the Republic of Armenia. The issue of postage stamps and illegal postal operations are still carried out on the territory of the so-called "Nagorno Karabakh Republic" by the illegal regime, in contravention of article 23 of the Constitution of the Universal Postal Union.
Considering the above, the Republic of Azerbaijan declares once again that, according to the relevant rules of the Universal Postal Union, the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan is the only legitimate structure entitled to issue and put into circulation postage stamps, as well as implement postal operations, on all territories of Azerbaijan recognized at international level, including on the occupied territories. No postal operations can be carried out on the occupied territories without the authorization of the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan. These operations have no legal force and contravene the national legislation of the Azerbaijan Republic, as well as the international legal norms that exist in this field.
We regret to inform that it will be impossible to comply with the provisions of the Universal Postal Convention and its Final Protocol until the territories occupied by the Republic of Armenia are released and the consequences of the occupation are eliminated.
The Republic of Azerbaijan reserves the right not to apply the rights and obligations arising from the Universal Postal Convention and its Final Protocol in regard to the Republic of Armenia.