President of the Republic of Azerbaijan IlhamAliyev has today received the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs Stephane Visconti, Igor Popov, Richard Hoagland and Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk. Russian co-chair said despite the fact that the OSCE Minsk Group includes new co-chairs from the US and France, the MG co-chair countries’ position on peaceful settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict remains unchanged. He added the co-chair countries want to launch substantial peace talks as soon as possible.
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 ElmarMammadyarov, 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.
A new ceasefire (repeatedly violated), as in 1994, but not a peace treaty. It’s the current situation concerning Nagorno-Karabakh, which is involving not only the two principal players, Armenia and Azerbaijan, but also Russia, Turkey, United States and France from a diplomatic viewpoint.
The ceasefire on April 5 is barely standing. The largest escalation of cruelty since 1994 is staggering. And the last Armenian government approval of a draft bill recognizing the Nagorno-Karabakh region’s independence is meddling negotiation on Nagorno-Karabakh war, mediated by OSCE Minsk Group and chaired by United States, Russia and France.
Beyond military perspective, several diplomatic works are very recurring during the last months. From meeting between Russian president Dmitri Medvedev with Armenian and Azerbaijan heads and summit between U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian foreign minister Sergej Lavrov, up till talks between Istanbul and Baku.
A lot of geopolitical perspectives are crossing. For example, peace talks are influenced by awful relationships between Turkey and Russia, which accused Istanbul of supplying weapons to Azerbaijan army. This context is almost neutralizing OSCE efforts. So diplomatic works are producing little progresses.
The charge that Azerbaijani forces have violated the ceasefire in the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh early on April 4 from Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Defense minister show that Baku strategy is working. Indeed, Azerbaijan is attracting international attetion to reach a positive deal. On the other hand, Armenia wants to maintain this regional order and shouldn’t want to make too many concessions under Russian and OSCE pressure.
Other geopolitic crisis could cause a reduction of international attention on Nagorno-Karabakh. This could mean that Russia and, in a part, Turkey could not be interested to change actual situation and continue to influence the Caucasus region.