OSCE MG proposes meeting of Azerbaijani, Armenian presidents
The OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs have made a statement regarding the meeting of Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov with his Armenian counterpart Edward Nalbandian in Brussels July 11, the OSCE website said on July 12.
The OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs (Ambassador Igor Popov of Russia, Ambassador Stephane Visconti of France, and Ambassador Richard Hoagland of the US) met July 11 with the Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers, Elmar Mammadyarov and Edward Nalbandian, to discuss modalities of further work on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, according to the statement.
The Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk, also participated in the meeting, said the statement.
“The ministers agreed to pass to their presidents the co-chairs’ proposal for a high-level meeting later this year,” the statement noted. “The co-chairs offered their assistance in organizing this meeting.”
The current situation on the contact line between the Armenian and Azerbaijani troops was also discussed, according to the statement.
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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