President Erdogan says Türkiye wants to realize Zengezur corridor 'as soon as possible'
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday stressed the importance of opening the Zangezur corridor land route in southern Caucasus, News.az reports.
"Hopefully, we will realize the Zangezur corridor as soon as possible and make our road and rail communication with friendly and brotherly Azerbaijan uninterrupted through Nakhchivan," Erdogan said after a Cabinet meeting in the capital Ankara.
The remarks come a day after his visit to Azerbaijan's autonomous Nakhchivan exclave, where he met his Azerbaijani counterpart Ilham Aliyev to discuss bilateral relations, regional and international developments, particularly the recent situation in Karabakh.
"We hope to turn our region into a basin of peace and prosperity through joint projects that will include our neighbor Iran," he added.
The Zangezur region was originally part of Azerbaijan, though the Soviets gave it to Armenia in the 1920s, leaving Azerbaijan deprived of a direct overland route to its exclave of Nakhchivan.
Following its 44-day war with Armenia in fall 2020, Azerbaijan has focused on infrastructure including motorways and a 43-kilometer (26.7-mile) railway through the corridor.
The corridor would be near or adjacent to Armenia’s border with Iran, reportedly making Tehran concerned the project might cut off its frontier with Yerevan.
Earlier, Erdogan said opening of the corridor is a "strategic issue" for Türkiye, and is "very important" for ties between Ankara and Baku.