Guliyev was born on December 10, 1947 in the Gazanchy village of the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic of Azerbaijan. After completing his secondary education in 1965, he entered the Chemistry-Technology faculty of the Oil And Chemistry Institute of Azerbaijan, graduating in 1970 and gaining the profession of a technologist-engineer. He then started working for Chemistry Plants of Azerbaijan in Sumgait. From 1971 to 1992, Guliyev worked in the Baku Oil Refinery Plant as a technologist, chief of workshop, engineer, chief engineer and the director. At the same time, he was elected a deputy to the Baku Soviet of Deputies, and a deputy to the Supreme Soviet of Azerbaijan SSR in 1990.
He was appointed the vice-president of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) and on December 7, 1992 - Chief of the Main Oil and Gas Processing Office.
From 11 May 1993 to 9 November 1993, Guliyev worked as the Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan. From November 1993 to November 1995, he was theSpeaker of the National Assembly of Azerbaijan. In 1995 Guliyev was re-elected a member of the Milli Majlis and chairman of the parliament of Azerbaijan. He resigned from the post of Speaker of Parliament on September 11, 1996.
Guliyev is a reformist-democrat in terms of his economic-political views. He emigrated to the USA in 1996.
Rasul Guliyev has presented briefings to United States policy makers in numerous forums, including those sponsored by the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, the International Republican Institute, the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and the Kennan Institute of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
He has testified before the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe on the issue of Elections, Democratization and Human rights in Azerbaijan
Prefers peace talks for the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabagh conflict. He is a supporter of defending the rights of free press and free capitalists. He is also a supporter of useful co-operation with close geographic neighbors of Azerbaijan and all countries. He considers democracy a priority in the internal policy of Azerbaijan, and peace and democracy in foreign policy.
Considers guaranteed participation of foreign investment in the Azerbaijani industry both acceptable and necessary. Possesses wide relations in international official political circles. In exile, he has been the leader of Azerbaijan Democratic Party.
During the past several years Rasul Guliyev, has devoted his efforts to writing political and historical books that reveal the realities of life in Azerbaijan today. His books have enjoyed widespread interest in theAzerbaijani diaspora forced to leave their homeland because of political persecution.
In late 2011 Guliyev launched a movement to campaign for democratic elections in Azerbaijan. He publishes his ideas and views in this regard on his blog: rasulguliyev.wordpress.com.
Guliyev has stated on many occasions that he will become the President of Azerbaijan, however this yet remains to be seen. In the eyes of the Azerbaijani Republic, Guliyev has yet to win the trust of the people. After the fiasco of the previously parliamentary elections in Azerbaijan where Guliyev failed to return to Baku, majority of the population lost faith in the man once regarded as the future leader. Guliyev's plane had landed in Simferopol with the view of continuing its journey to Baku. However, according to the inside sources Guliyev's plan from the beginning was not to return to Baku in fear of persecution and this was merely an act aimed at fooling the population to act in its own right without a leader. This fiasco still is remembered in the minds of ordinary Azerbaijanis.
He is married and has three children.
Rasul Guliyev is author of a series of inventions and utilization suggestions and has a Masters degree in Technical Sciences. He has been rewarded with the honorary award of the H.Z.Taghiyev Charity Foundation for his charitable work.
Rasul Guliyev is author of the books:
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• Oil And Politics, U.S. 1997
• Path To Democracy, 1997
• Purpose Of Our Struggle
• Against The Tide, 2010
• The Cost of Truth, 2011
• A Dissident's Destiny, 2013