TODAY.AZ / Politics

No excessive optimism on Karabakh talks can be expected, says Lavrov

22 November 2017 [12:40] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

By Rashid Shirinov

No excessive optimism on the Karabakh talks can be expected, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a joint briefing with his Armenian counterpart Edward Nalbandian in Yerevan, Sputnik Armenia reported on November 21.

He reminded that the Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers have recently held meetings with the three co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group from Russia, France and the U.S.

“We will analyze with the American and French colleagues at what point we are and make active efforts for the settlement. But unfortunately, the whole experience of negotiations shows that the problem is difficult and the negotiations will not be completed quickly,” Lavrov said.

As he noted in Baku three days ago, Lavrov reiterated that the components of the talks on the conflict have long been known. They are contained in many documents that were deposited at the OSCE headquarters in Vienna in 2007, 2009 and 2011. These principles remain on the negotiating table in their entirety, Lavrov stressed.

“I will emphasize what I said in Baku. These components are formed into a package, and it is very difficult to take one or two of them and propose them as a basis, because then other balancing components will drop out,” Lavrov said.

He further expressed satisfaction with the positive feedback from the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan about the results of their last meeting in Geneva. Lavrov noted that the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs will continue to provide assistance that would help resolve the problem.

During his visit to Baku on November 19-20, the Russian FM met with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov. While meeting with President, Lavrov noted that Russia, as a co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, is interested in helping in every possible way to seek solutions and ensure the movement towards the settlement of the conflict. He also said that diplomacy can help move the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict from a dead point.

Azerbaijan and Armenia fought a lengthy war that ended with signing of a fragile ceasefire in 1994. Since the war, Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan's territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding regions. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and over 1 million were displaced as a result of the large-scale hostilities.

While the OSCE Minsk Group acted as the only mediator in resolution of the conflict, the occupation of the territory of the sovereign state with its internationally recognized boundaries has been left out of due attention of the international community for years.

Until now, Armenia ignores four UN Security Council resolutions on immediate withdrawal from the occupied territory of Azerbaijan, thus keeping tension high in the region.


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