Head of Azerbaijan’s Center for Strategic Studies: “The three co-chairing countries of the Minsk Group do not use levers of pressure on Armenia, the aggressor - PHOTOSESSION

Head of Azerbaijan’s Center for Strategic Studies: “The three co-chairing countries of the Minsk Group do not use levers of pressure on Armenia, the aggressor - <font color=red>PHOTOSESSION</font>
# 19 October 2012 09:24 (UTC +04:00)
Baku. Viktoriya Dementyeva - APA. Conference on “The role of Azerbaijan-US cooperation in ensuring peace and security in the region” is taking place in Baku, APA reports. The conference has been organized by the Center for Strategic Studies under President of Azerbaijan.

Chief of the Department for Political Analysis and Information of the Presidential Administration of Azerbaijan Elnur Aslanov spoke about the main aspects of the bilateral cooperation and said US and Azerbaijan are actively cooperating in terms of energy, political reforms, military. He also touched on Nagorno Karabakh conflict.

“Unsolved conflicts create long-term problems for our efforts to ensure security and stability in the Euro-Atlantic area. Despite the political efforts towards soonest resolution of Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict, the activities carried out in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan seriously violate the international law, serves strengthening of the status quo, maintains the results of the ethnic cleansing policy, artificially changes demography in the occupied territories and seriously impedes peaceful solution to the conflict. As a government representative I want to underline once more that Azerbaijan is ready to firmly continue negotiations to determine the status of Nagorno Karabakh within Azerbaijan’s territory”, he said.

Elnur Aslanov said Azerbaijan needs assistance of the US in the resolution of Nagorno Karabakh conflict.

Adam Sterling, Charge d’ Affaires for the US Embassy in Azerbaijan, said the two countries are cooperating in a number of spheres, in terms of ISAF, regional and global security. The diplomat said Nagorno Karabakh conflict remains the major obstacle for the stability in the South Caucasus.
“OSCE Minsk Group continues efforts towards establishment of lasting peace and US, as a co-chair of the Minsk Group, supports these efforts”, he said.

Director of the Center for Strategic Studies under the President of Azerbaijan Farhad Mammadov noted that the US must be interested in long-term stability and security in the region: “At present, the unsolved conflicts in the region are the major threat to the security of the three countries of the South Caucasus. Separatism of Abkhazia and the South Ossetia and the occupation of Nagorno Karabakh are the main obstacles for the process of integration in the region and formation of a new and safe image of the South Caucasus. It is known that taking into account the permanent membership of the US, Russia and France, the world’s strong and influential states, at the UN Security Council, Azerbaijan agreed to their co-chairing at the OSCE Minsk Group. Azerbaijan still hopes that sooner or later, each of the three co-chairing countries will respect the decisions passed basing on the four resolutions of the UN Security Council. Though all of the three countries have levers of pressure on the aggressor, none of them uses the existing mechanisms of influence”, he said.

According to Farhad Mammadov, one of the issues of concern is the regional security and the fact that the US policy on the South Caucasus depends on the impact of some small groups in the US: “These groups jeopardize the purposeful and effective foreign policy of the US in the region. It must not be accepted as norm, due to the activity of Armenian Diaspora the US has suffered first of all, the appointment of the US ambassador to Azerbaijan was delayed for more than a year. Due to this reason, the US didn’t give an official assistance to the construction of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, transport artery between Asia and Europe. This railway is considered the most safe and effective route for cargo transportation.”

Problems, the prospects of regional security and the Nagorno Karabakh conflict will be discussed during the event. The conference is being continued on panels. The US experts and representatives of the diplomatic missions in Azerbaijan are attending the conference.