The first president of Azerbaijan has died

Azerbaijan's first president, Ayaz Mutalibov, has reportedly died at the age of 83.

Ayaz Mutalibov was born in 1938 in Baku. In 1963, he became a member of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and headed industrial enterprises. From 1979 to 1982 he was the Minister of Local Industry of the Azerbaijan SSR, then Chairman of the State Planning Committee and Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Azerbaijan SSR, and then Chairman of the Council of Ministers. In May 1990, he was elected President of the Azerbaijan SSR. He was a member of the Central Committee of the KPSS, as well as a member of the Politburo of the party.

In September 1991, Ayaz Mutalibov won the presidential election. During his presidency, the situation around the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, proclaimed on September 2, 1991, escalated. The conflict turned into a confrontation between the Armenian and Azerbaijani peoples. Ayaz Mutalibov resigned in March 1992 amid regional losses and failures of the Azerbaijani army.

Acting President Yakub Mammadov failed to improve the situation, and in May 1992, members of the Supreme Soviet voted to reinstate Ayaz Mutalibov. But under pressure from the opposition, he soon resigned from the presidency and left the country.

Until 2012, he lived in Moscow, then returned to the homeland of the former president.