By Jeyhun Aliyev
ANKARA (AA) - Azerbaijan on Wednesday celebrated its National Day of the Armed Forces.
First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva congratulated the nation on the occasion.
"This is a holiday of military valor, honor and bravery. Today we pay tribute to the heroism of those who defend our homeland by putting their lives at risk," Aliyeva said on Instagram.
Referring to country people, service people and veterans, Aliyeva called the Armed Forces Day as a "true national holiday".
"The army is the backbone of our statehood, security and stability," she said.
Aliyeva said that the "key strength" of Azerbaijani army is the fighting spirit and boundless love of soldiers and officers to the motherland.
"Dear servicemen! We are proud of your bravery, courage and the highest professionalism," she added.
The creation of Azerbaijan's national army was started by the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (ADR), which was established on May 28, 1918, but was toppled in only 23 months.
Azerbaijan regained independence in 1991. The same year, on Oct. 9 the Supreme Council of Azerbaijan adopted a decision to establish the national army.
On May 22, 1998, in accordance with a presidential decree, June 26 was declared the Armed Forces Day.