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  • Friday, March 28, 14:06

 The stalemate in the Minsk Process aiming at settling the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict continued for most of 2013, says ENP Country Progress Report 2013 on Azerbaijan. 

However, the Presidents of the two countries reconvened in November 2013 for the first time since January 2012 in a summit in Vienna, mediated by the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, at which they agreed to advance negotiations towards a peaceful settlement and to meet again in the months ahead. An upsurge of violence along the line of contact was nevertheless witnessed early 2014. The EU continued to give its full support to the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs in their work to facilitate a lasting settlement.

The EU recommends the following steps for promoting the peace process: 
stepping up efforts towards agreement on the Madrid Principles, as a basis for peace, in accordance with the commitments undertaken by the Presidents of

Azerbaijan and Armenia within the Minsk Group; refrain from actions and statements that could heighten tension and undermine the peace process; 
promoting an environment conducive to progress in the conflict settlement, encourage and support related peace-building activities;
ensuring unimpeded access for representatives of the EU to Nagorno- Karabakh and surrounding regions in support of conflict transformation activities in full complementarity with the efforts of the Minsk Group.

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