Azerbaijan announces 53 pct rise in army spending

Azerbaijan, in a tense armed standoff with neighbour Armenia, is to increase military spending by 53 percent this year, state media quoted President Ilham Aliyev as saying on Tuesday.

Azerbaijan announces 53 pct rise in army spending
"In the past 4-5 years the military and defence budget of the country has risen from $150 million to $1.3 billion. However Azerbaijan's state budget over this period has risen ten-fold," the Azerbaijan newspaper quoted Aliyev as saying.

"I believe that in the context of an overall increase in government spending, defence spending should be increased from $1.3 billion to $2 billion in 2008. Azerbaijan has great military potential and must strengthen this," he said.

Nagorno-Karabakh is internationally-recognised as part of Azerbaijan. Since the war it and surrounding districts have been controlled by ethnic Armenian separatists who receive assistance from Armenia.

Last Mod: 15 Nisan 2008, 13:36
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