Azerbaijani president: Karabakh talks resumed without any preconditions
The preconditions put forward by Armenia in connection with the resumption of negotiations on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict’s settlement following last year’s April escalation did not yield any results, said Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev.
The Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers met yesterday, and the Azerbaijani side resumed the talks ignoring any preconditions by Armenia, thus the aggressor was forced to return to the negotiating table, the president said addressing a meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers dedicated to results of socio-economic development in the first half of 2017 and objectives for the future, APA reported.
“As you know, following the April escalation, Armenia put forward some preconditions for the resumption of the talks and clearly stated them. I knew that it was foolishness, because they, sooner or later, will return to the negotiating table and they will lose respect once again, which they do not have. And it happened. Yesterday the Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers met. The talks were resumed and the Azerbaijani side didn’t accept any pre-conditions”, said the president.
The Azerbaijani president stressed that Armenia resorts to provocations every time when pressure is growing in connection with the settlement of the conflict.
“The confirmation of this is the terrorist act committed in the Armenian parliament several years ago, the escalation of tensions on the frontline that took place after the talks in Paris in 2014, as well as the appropriate response of the Azerbaijani army to the provocation committed on the contact line of troops in April 2016,” he added.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict entered its modern phase when the Armenian SRR made territorial claims against the Azerbaijani SSR in 1988.
A fierce war broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. As a result of the war, Armenian armed forces occupied some 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory which includes Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent districts (Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli and Zangilan), and over a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced people.
The military operations finally came to an end when Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in Bishkek in 1994.
Dealing with the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the OSCE Minsk Group, which was created after the meeting of the CSCE (OSCE after the Budapest summit held in December 1994) Ministerial Council in Helsinki on 24 March 1992. The Group’s members include Azerbaijan, Armenia, Russia, the United States, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Belarus, Finland and Sweden.
Besides, the OSCE Minsk Group has a co-chairmanship institution, comprised of Russian, the US and French co-chairs, which began operating in 1996.
Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 of the UN Security Council, which were passed in short intervals in 1993, and other resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly, PACE, OSCE, OIC, and other organizations require Armenia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from Nagorno-Karabakh.
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