Armenia shouldn’t avoid negotiations on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Azerbaijani President IlhamAliyev said in a joint press statement with French President Francois Hollande. Aliyev noted that France, as the co-chair country of the OSCE Minsk Group, is making efforts to settle the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Speaking about the bilateral agenda, the president said it is very extensive and he added that Azerbaijan and France very actively cooperate in other spheres as well.
The existence of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict undermines peace, security, stability and comprehensive economic development of the South Caucasus region, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister ElmarMammadyarov said. He made the remarks Feb. 22 in Ankara at the international conference “Khojaly Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity and Terrorism”. The minister said Azerbaijan supports peace and willing to resolve the conflict by peaceful means and he underlined Azerbaijan’s efforts aimed at ensuring peace and stability in the region.
The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group met Feb. 16 with the Foreign Minister of Armenia Edward Nalbandian and the Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan Elmar Mammadyarov, separately and then jointly, said a statement of the OSCE MG co-chairs Feb. 17. The OSCE MG co-chairs underscored again that no countries, including Armenia and Azerbaijan, recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent and sovereign state, according to the statement. “Accordingly, the co-chairs do not accept the results of the referendum on Feb. 20 as affecting the legal status of Nagorno-Karabakh. The co-chairs also stress that the results in no way prejudge the final status of Nagorno-Karabakh or the outcome of the ongoing negotiations to bring a lasting and peaceful settlement to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict”, said the statement. “The co-chairs plan to travel to the region in March”.
Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov will discuss the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with the co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group (MG), Hikmat Hajiyev, spokesman for the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, said. Hajiyev noted that the meeting will be held as part of the Munich Security Conference, scheduled for Feb. 17-19. Armenia’s Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian is also expected to meet within the OSCE MG co-chairs within the Munich Security Conference.