The South Caucuses sits at the nexus of Europe and Asia. Surrounded by the major powers of Russia, Iran, and Turkey, Azerbaijan plays an important part as a buffer and broker to these powers and those beyond. The US government has worked with Azerbaijan as a strategic partner in its links to the rest of Asia and as a key to energy security for its Allies in Europe and the Mediterranean.
Since the fall of the Soviet Union and regaining its independency on August 30th of 1991, Azerbaijan has tackled many challenges to its development with the aid of its partners. These include the development of its economy, the formation of its political system, tackling corruption, and taking care of its million IDPs and refugees.
Through this time, Azerbaijan has contributed to US on combating terrorism and built the critical oil and gas pipelines to allies in Europe. In turn, the US has supported the ethnically diverse Azerbaijan with promoting civil society, developing its security, and resolving the Karabakh conflict via the OSCE Minsk Group. With the reestablishment of its territorial integrity in 2020 Azerbaijan is now in a better position than ever to grow.
However, this growth will require strategic investment from partners. Azerbaijan must demine, and rebuild the demolished cities, towns and villages of the region, and create sustainable economic opportunities for residents of all ethnicities. The US and its allies can see an increase in prosperity in the South Caucuses and increased stability in the region by working with Azerbaijan.