The coronavirus pandemic being the main calamity and at the same time, the main discussion topic of the world has also created new practices. The wars and the difficult situations allow for familiarizing with both people and states. One of the primary conditions in such situations is not to succumb to panic, to accurately asses the scale of the calamity, and to take operative and right decisions through quick management. Being cold-blooded and experienced is always useful.
When the world’s new calamity knocked at our door, the Azerbaijani government acted just this way. The fight measures were launched while taking discreet but quick decisions and accurately analyzing the scale of the tragedy that could be caused by the calamity.
The Azerbaijani government established Operative Task Force, switched over to enhanced work mode, took prophylactic and preventative measures, and started to implement stable and consistent information-sharing and awareness-raising measures. The taking of the steps being a sign of solidarity between state and people (the most needed feature in these days which can treat national security) was commenced. And most importantly, it became clear that the government’s priority is the survival of its citizens, the health factor being precious and valuable to the extent that can’t be compared to the figures showing the growth of collected taxes and the level of economic development. And the perception of this truth by a citizen and feeling of this truth through personal example of a citizen played a role of irreplaceable psychological support which is very important in such situations.
The steps were taken during these days under the direct control and the initiative of President Ilham Aliyev also created another Azerbaijani practice.
Experience of telecourses and online classes
As a first step in the fight against coronavirus in Azerbaijan classes in all educational institutions were postponed. However, the educational process has been restored in a short period of time. Broadcasting of telecourses has been started in Madaniyyat and ARB Gunash TV channels from March 11, for students of all educational institutions of the country with the organization of the Ministry of Education. Tele-courses, entitled “Ders vakhti (Lesson time)” have covered all classes and most subjects and have been presented in relevance with the schedule, declared for Azerbaijani and Russian departments beforehand.
People, who could not watch “Ders vakhti” in front of the screen, were able to them in the Facebook account of the Education Ministry besides the official Youtube channel. 1920 video classes have been placed at www.video.edu.az website of the Education Ministry as well.
Live online classes have been started by the Education Ministry in the framework of the “Virtual school” project from April 2. At the same time, students were able to use Chat function in order to make phone and video calls with their friends. Online classes have covered not only compulsory schools but also high schools.
The study of this experience has been started in Azerbaijan and the process is underway now. Ukraine and Georgia have already begun the use of the experience. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has informed in this regard.
Experience of the Fund to Support to Fight against Coronavirus
The idea of Azerbaijan to establish the Fund to Support to Fight against Coronavirus has already become a wide experience too. The citizens, businessmen, civil servants, and companies joined the fund with donations, established on the initiative of President Ilham Aliyev and donated his and First Vice President Mehriban Aliyeva's annual salary. More than AZN 100 mln. thousand funds have already been donated in the Fund. One of the important issues in such days is the existence of national and civil solidarity, the society to feel it once again, everyone to demonstrate their ability and feel by being able to do their best for the motherland and society. This Fund was a very important impetus as an indicator of especially those feelings, behaviors, the integrity of the society. After Azerbaijan, Funds with the same content have been established in Russia, Turkey, and other countries as well. The heads of state, businessmen, and citizens in those countries as well have sent messages to their society just as by donations to these Funds.
They write about the experience of Azerbaijan
Member of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Borislav Bereza's article “Fight against coronavirus. How do they do it in Azerbaijan? ” reads namely as following: "Azerbaijan's experience in the fight against coronavirus can be applied in Ukraine. In general, I do not idealize the Azerbaijani leadership, but I see a strategy and system in their work."
The Ukrainian MP noted the work done by the President of Azerbaijan in the fight against coronavirus: “Currently, organized tests are being conducted in Azerbaijan to check for coronavirus. It's free. Due to the rapid spread of the coronavirus in the world and its emergence in neighboring countries, special laboratories have been established in Azerbaijan to combat COVID-19. In addition, mobile laboratories have been set up, which are able to quickly go to any region of Azerbaijan and conduct emergency tests if there is a suspicion of infection. As part of the reorientation of industrial enterprises, enterprises producing medical masks are being opened in Azerbaijan. This is done with the support of the state. Azerbaijan moved up 16 places to 44th place in the US Heritage Foundation's Economic Freedom Index. Ukraine ranks 147th in the ranking - between the Gambia, Argentina, and Micronesia. It is also part of the government's policy to increase the budget so that it can spend the money on the fight against coronavirus. There are a number of measures that need to be approved and implemented in the coming days. From tax breaks to special care for teachers during a coronavirus epidemic. All this shows that there is a systematic approach to solving the problem. Azerbaijanis are less worried. They are simply preparing to survive in this struggle, and the state is ready to provide them for this. Our government must learn this."
In his article published on lb.ua, the Ukrainian journalist Alexander Demchenko referred to the experience of Azerbaijan: “What did, for example, Azerbaijan do? Baku has created a system in which citizens who arrive from countries where the coronavirus is rampant are initially tested at airports. They are not "kept" there. And the planes did not arrive all at once, but one at a time - so that the lines would not be collected, and the infection would not spread. Further, all arrivals are sent without fail for observation. For these purposes, four to five-star hotels are allocated. Citizens do not pay a cent for this; all expenses were borne by the state. ”
The journalist then noted: “We have a fund in our country which supports the fight against coronavirus. More than one billion allocated to this fund. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev ve first lady, First Vice President of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyev have transferred their annual salaries to the fund separately. It should also be noted that the fund does not have payments only at the expense of the state. Currently, medium and small companies, banks and other private entities make transfers from AZN 10 to AZN 2 million to the fund, and this process is underway.
Thanks to these efforts, more than AZN 100 million of voluntary donations have been transferred to the fund. I think that Azerbaijan has chosen the healthiest strategy… All of Azerbaijan is already in quarantine. There is no agitation in the country. There is a trust in government bodies and a belief that they will not be left alone.
Recalling that Azerbaijani President aide Hikmat Hajiyev stated for a while ago that Azerbaijan's experience to date is being studied by other countries, there have been appeals by different countries in this regard ...
… Taken measures, fight given creates a hope that Azerbaijan will pass this test with fewer losses. However, these difficult days brought new, greater experience…
We are strong together!