The Azerbaijani media reported that the 74th International Astronautical Congress is being held in Baku in collaboration with the Space Agency of Azerbaijan (Azerkomos) and the International Astronautics Federation, commencing today.
The event is attracting representatives from various space agencies, the public sector, investors, private space firms, local and international media, and over 5,000 delegates from 101 countries. The exhibition pavilion features representatives from 150 companies.
Notable participants include agencies and companies such as NASA (USA), JAXA (Japan), Agenzia Speziale Italiana (Italian Space Agency), AIRBUS, Canadian Innovation Center Ino, CNES (French National Space Center), ISRO (Indian Space Agency), Türkiye Uzay Ajansı, Roscosmos, and other international entities.
It is essential to note that this congress occurs against the backdrop of Azerbaijan's actions in Nagorno-Karabakh, including a recent war and the resulting displacement of the Armenian population. The conflict involved Azerbaijan, supported by Turkey, employing prohibited weapons and Middle Eastern mercenaries, aggressive actions against civilians, a prolonged blockade of Nagorno-Karabakh's population (120 thousand people, including 30 thousand children), which resulted in famine, death of children and older people. The apotheosis was the one-day war on September 19-20, which subjected the capital, Stepanakert, to 24 hours of continuous artillery shelling.
Despite calls and condemnations, the international community's participation in the congress, including all three mediation countries, raises moral questions due to Azerbaijan's leadership's involvement in recent violence. This participation suggests tolerance towards Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, undermining the confidence in accountability for any crime. Critics argue that the international community, by participating, disregards the bloodshed in favor of financial interests.