Iran and Azerbaijan have started construction of a bridge in Zangezur bypassing Armenia
The foundation stone for a new automobile bridge, along with border and customs infrastructure, was laid in the vicinity of Agbend village in Azerbaijan’s Zangilan district on October 6, according to Azerbaijan in Focus, reporting Turan. The ceremony was attended by Azerbaijan’s Deputy Prime Minister, Shahin Mustafayev, and Iran’s Minister of Roads and Urban Development, Mehrdad Bazrpash.
This project represents a crucial step in the realization of the “Memorandum of Understanding between the governments of Azerbaijan and Iran on the creation of new communication links between the East Zangezur Economic Region of Azerbaijan and the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic (NAR) through the territory of Iran.” Its main objective is to enhance transit cargo transportation through the region and facilitate entry and exit to the NAR.
Deputy Prime Minister Mustafayev highlighted that once the construction is completed, the new border checkpoint will be capable of accommodating daily entries from approximately 1.1 thousand trucks and vehicles, 30 buses, and 15 thousand individuals. The road bridge itself will feature seven lanes of traffic.
“This road will also serve transit traffic. This is important both for Azerbaijan, Iran, and for the region as a whole. This is the necessary infrastructure for the East Zangezur Economic District. Consequently, the region will evolve into a significant logistics center,” stated Mustafayev, as reported by Azertac.
Furthermore, plans are in place to construct a railway bridge in the same area, with all work slated for completion within a year.
Mustafayev emphasized that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has placed a high priority on the restoration of territories liberated from occupation and the effective utilization of their potential.
“Currently, extensive programs are being implemented in these areas, including the establishment of new transport infrastructure. As a result, the region’s transit capabilities will expand. Simultaneously, efforts are being made to enhance access to the NAR and facilitate the transportation of goods. To achieve this, an agreement has been reached with Iran,” added Mustafayev.
He noted that the connection to the NAR will be established by traversing Iran’s territory, with bridges set to be erected near Agband village in Zangilan district and within Nakhchivan’s territory.
Mustafayev also underlined that the bridge project has been meticulously prepared, and restoration work has been executed along the banks of the Araz River, successfully restoring the river to its natural course.