Leonid Kravchuk

Former President of Ukraine

I saw Heydar Aliyev for the first time at the Congress of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He spoke, and I listened to him in the hall. Heydar Aliyev spoke very vividly, very emotionally, using oriental comparisons. Then I asked my colleagues: Where did Heydar Aliyev work before? I was told in the Security Service. I was surprised, because, as a rule, people working in the KGB were not brilliant speakers, they were not personalities. Heydar Aliyev was speaking in a large arena, in a full hall. It is very difficult to perform in front of 4,000 people in the hall. Heydar Aliyev did it. This is the first thing I remember about Heydar Aliyev. Heydar Aliyev is the son of Azerbaijan. Nothing more needs to be said, that says it all. He is the son of his people. In a conversation with me, Heydar Aliyev always spoke about Azerbaijan. He did not think of himself outside of his country.

Your great influence and political experience will help stabilize the situation in Transcaucasia and establish a long-awaited peace in the troubled Azerbaijani land.