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Azerbaijani President Sparks UN Protests


Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev
UNITED NATIONS -- Some 40 Armenian, Azerbaijani, and Turkish activists faced off outside UN headquarters in New York on May 4 ahead of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev's appearance at the UN.

UN security guards said Azerbaijani and Turkish activists were forced to move because demonstrations were not permitted on the sidewalk directly in front of the building.

Organizer Nazareth Markarian said the Armenian protesters had gathered to protest Aliyev's "racist and aggressive" policies and rhetoric toward Armenia.

Markarian also said Aliyev was using Azerbaijan's position as a nonpermanent member of the UN Security Council to deny Armenians their rights.

Aliyev on May 4 presided over the council's debate on strengthening international cooperation on counterterrorism.

He called for a "comprehensive convention" on international terrorism. He said such an agreement could effectively prevent states from organizing, financing, and providing training for terrorist activities.

He also emphasized that the international community needed to prevent states from promoting terrorism, in addition to terrorist groups.

He also spoke at length about terrorist acts perpetrated by Armenia against Azerbaijan.

* CORRECTION: This article has been changed to correct the implication that Azerbaijani and Turkish demonstrators rallied to protest against President Aliyev's visit, rather than as a counterprotest to the Armenian demonstration.
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