France, Strasbourg, April 23 /Trend A.Maharramli /
Nagorno-Karabakh problem is extremely important and it is necessary to find a solution, the acting chairman of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, a Briton, David Lidington said on the first working day of the spring session of PACE.
The head of the Azerbaijani delegation Rafael Huseynov asked Lidington how exactly can CoE Committee of Ministers affect Armenia to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Huseynov noted that there are a lot of IDPs and refugees, who are forced to lead a tragic life due to the Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan. "They have one simple request. They want the occupied territories of Azerbaijan to be liberated and to return to their own homes. And it is Armenia, which is more controlled from the outside and has failed to fulfill one of the basic obligations before CoE, who hinders the achievement of real results. In addition Armenia took the obligation to solve the problem peacefully 11 years ago when joining the Council of Europe. How exactly can CoE Committee of Ministers influence on Armenia to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict?", he asked.
Lidington said this issue should be raised each time, because the problem is very important and it is necessary to find ways to solve it.
"Indeed, it is OSCE Minsk Group who is directly charged with this problem. However, it is also related to the duties of the Council of Europe. Our duty is to create suitable conditions for reaching an agreement between the parties. Do not forget that Armenia and Azerbaijan were admitted into the CE and the commitment lies in the fact that the issue should be resolved peacefully. In my opinion, the Committee of Ministers should also exert maximum influence on the solution of the problem" he said.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and 7 surrounding districts.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France, and the U.S. - are currently holding the peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.
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