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Heydar Alirza Aliyev Edit Profile

politician , President

Heydar Alirza Aliyev was an Azerbaijani politician and statesman. He was the third President of Azerbaijan who served from October 1993 to October 2003.


Mr. Aliyev was born in Nakhchyvan, Azerbaijan, on May 10, 1923. His father was a railway worker.


Heydar Alirza Aliyev received his primary education from Nakhchivan Pedagogical School. He then attended the Azerbaijan Industrial Institute (now the Azerbaijan State Oil Academy) from 1939 to 1941, studying architecture. But the outbreak of the World War II prevented him from completing his education. In 1949 and 1950, he studied at the USSR KGB Officer Corps Qualifications-Raising School.

Mr. Aliyev received special education in the cities of Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) and Moscow, and in 1957, graduated from the History Department of the Baku State University. According to American journalist Pete Earley, Mr. Aliyev first attended the Ministry of State Security Academy in Leningrad, graduating in 1944.

In 1966, Heydar Aliyev completed senior staff professional development courses at the high school named after F.E.Dzierżyńsky in Moscow.


In 1941-1944, Heydar Aliyev headed a secret division at the Archive Department of the People's Commissariat of Internal Affairs of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic and then served as head of the General Department of the Council of People's Commissars of Nakhchivan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic. In May 1944, he was sent to work at state security bodies.

After graduating from the USSR State Security Committee`s (KGB) Senior Staff Training School in Leningrad, Heydar Aliyev was appointed as department head at the State Security Committee of Azerbaijan SSR in 1950.

In 1958, Mr. Aliyev was appointed as head of the Counter-Intelligence Department of the State Security Committee of Azerbaijan SSR and was promoted to deputy chairman of the State Security Committee in 1964 (held the post till 1967).

In 1967, he was elected as chairman of the State Security Committee under the Council of Ministers of Azerbaijan SSR and was promoted to the rank of a major general. Heydar Aliyev was elected as the first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Azerbaijan at its Plenary Session held on 12 July 1969.

For twenty-two years, Heydar Aliyev had been a member of the Supreme Soviets of the USSR and Azerbaijan SSR. From 1974 to 1979, he held the post of first deputy chairman of the USSR Council of Ministers.

In 1976, Mr. Aliyev was a candidate to the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and was elected as its member in December 1982 and then appointed as First Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of the USSR. During his tenure, Heydar Aliyev was responsible for vital sectors of the USSR`s economic, social and cultural life.

In October 1987, in protest at the policy pursued by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and personally by Secretary General Mikhail Gorbachev, Heydar Aliyev resigned from his posts.

In 1991, Mr. Aliyev was elected as chairman of the Supreme Assembly of the Autonomous Republic of Nakhchivan, and in accordance with the legislation as deputy chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the Republic of Azerbaijan. He held this post until 1993.

On 21 November 1992, at the constituent congress of the New Azerbaijan Party in Nakhchivan, Heydar Aliyev was elected as chairman of the Party.

In May-June 1993, when Azerbaijan was at the verge of civil war and loss of independence, the people of Azerbaijan demanded to bring Heydar Aliyev to power. The leadership of Azerbaijan was forced to invite Mr. Aliyev to Baku.

On 15 June 1993, Heydar Aliyev was elected as chairman of the Supreme Soviet of Azerbaijan, and on 24 June took the office of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan. On 3 October 1993, in a nationwide voting which saw high turnout, Mr. Aliyev was elected as President of the Republic of Azerbaijan. On 11 October 1998, Heydar Aliyev was re-elected as President of the Republic of Azerbaijan with 76.1 percent of votes in a high turnout election.

Having agreed to run for the presidential office at the 15 October 2003 election, he then withdrew his candidacy in favor of Ilham Aliyev in connection with health problems.

On 12 December 2003, national leader of the Azerbaijani people Heydar Aliyev died at Cleveland Hospital in the United States of America and was buried at the Alley of Honors in Baku on 15 December.


  • The period when Heydar Aliyev was in power was marked with many significant developments in Azerbaijan like adoption of the Constitution of the independent Azerbaijan in 1995, first independent and democratic parliamentary elections in the same year, introduction of the Constitutional Court, abolishment of the death penalty, municipal elections etc.

    Throughout his life, Mr. Aliyev was awarded a number of state orders and medals, international awards, elected honorable doctor of universities in many countries, including the Order of Lenin four times, the Order of the Red Star once and Hero of the Socialist Labor twice.


Main ideal and political direction of the leadership philosophy of Heydar Aliyev, which started in the late 1960s, was characterized with wide expansion of all forms and means of national self-expression of the people, consolidation of the national dignity and realization of rapid development strategy stimulating the elevation of national consciousness. Heydar Aliyev’s philosophy of Azerbaijanism, which was created at the time, determined the place of Azerbaijan in the modern world, provided a strong basis for the solidarity of the world Azerbaijanis as an ideological ground to the national statehood.


Mr. Aliyev was a wise leader, a man of relentless determination and genius personality.


In 1948 he married Zarifa Aliyeva. On 12 October 1955, their daughter Sevil was born. On 24 December 1961, their son Ilham was born. Zarifa Aliyeva died of cancer in 1985.

Sevil Aliyev

Ilham Aliyev
Ilham Aliyev - son of Heydar Aliyev

Zarifa Aziz gizi Aliyeva - educator , physician
Zarifa Aziz gizi Aliyeva - wife of Heydar Aliyev