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Elmar Mammadyarov: Territorial integrity of Azerbaijan is not a topic for discussion

  • Thursday, May 8, 16:55

 The territorial integrity of Azerbaijan is not a topic for discussion  and withdrawal of Armenian forces from the "occupied territories" was the main condition for settlement of the conflict, Azerbaijan's Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said at today's press-conference when commenting on the six principles offered by the American co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, James Warlick, as Azerbaijani mass media reported. 

He also added that "these 6 principles have been previously announced.He said that the Azerbaijani side supports the development of a peace agreement: "The status quo is unacceptable. The status quo is unacceptable for the Armenians as well, the country is not developing and it faces demographic challenges. We call on the Armenian side to solve this issue." 

On 8 May The  U.S. Co-chairman of the OSCE Minsk Group, James Warlick, made a speech  at the Carnegie Endowment in Washington,  and unveiled proposals from international mediators to resolve the Karabakh conflict. He called on the parties to take decisive steps and actions to achieve peace. According to him proposals for settlement  are at the negotiating table, and the parties should be guided by them.

At the heart of a deal are the UN Charter and relevant documents and the core principles of the Helsinki Final Act. In particular, we focus on those principles and commitments that pertain to 4 the non-use or threat of force, territorial integrity, and equal rights and self-determination of peoples.
Building on that foundation, there are six elements that will have to be part of any peace agreement if it is to endure. While the sequencing and details of these elements remains the subject of negotiations, they must be seen as an integrated whole. Any attempt to select some elements over others will make it impossible to achieve a balanced solution.

In no particular order, these elements are:
First, in light of Nagorno-Karabakh’s complex history, the sides should commit to determining its final legal status through a mutually agreed and legally binding expression of will in the future. This is not optional. Interim status will be temporary.

Second, the area within the boundaries of the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region that is not controlled by Baku should be granted an interim status that, at a minimum, provides guarantees for security and self-governance.

Third, the occupied territories surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh should be returned to Azerbaijani control. There can be no settlement without respect for Azerbaijan’s sovereignty, and the recognition that its sovereignty over these territories must be restored.
Fourth , there should be a corridor linking Armenia to Nagorno-Karabakh. It must be wide enough to provide secure passage, but  it cannot encompass the whole of Lachin district.

Fifth, an enduring settlement will have to recognize the right of all IDPs and refugees to return to their former places of residence.

Sixth and finally, a settlement must include international security guarantees that would include a peacekeeping operation.

We intend to continue working through the Minsk Group as the primary channel for resolving this conflict, Warlick said. 

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