Washington Welcomes Commitments of Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan to Reinvigorate Peaceful Process: American Diplomat
Azerbaijan, Baku, 15 July /corr. Trend A.Gasimova / Washington welcomes the commitments of Presidents of Armenia, Serj Sargsyan and Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, to reinvigorate the Minsk Group process on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
"The USA welcomes the commitments of Presidents Sargsyan and Aliyev to reinvigorate the Minsk Group process," U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Matthew Bryza, told Trend on 15 July.
Bryza, who is Co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group on Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, said that he intends to meet with Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian in Washington and discuss the condition of talks.
In addition, the Co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group intend to meet with the Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan, Elmar Mammadyarov, in the near weeks.
"I hope to elicit the Minister's views on the few elements of the Basic Principles that remain unresolved, as Presidents Aliyev and Sargsyan asked the Co-Chairs to do during their June 6 meeting in St. Petersburg," Bryza said.
The diplomat said that the Minister had a productive meeting on 14 July with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, during which the Secretary expressed her readiness to support the efforts of the Co-Chairs to help Armenia and Azerbaijan bridge their remaining differences with regard to the Basic Principles as outlined in the Madrid Document.
In November last year, the Co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group presented the Foreign Ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan their new proposals on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries appeared in 1988 due to Armenian territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenia has occupied 20% of the Azerbaijani lands including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and its seven surrounding districts. Since 1992 to the present time, these territories have been under Armenian occupation. In 1994, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a cease-fire agreement at which time the active hostilities ended. The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Russia, France and USA) are holding peaceful negotiations.
The first meeting between Ilham Aliyev and Serj Sargsyan (as President of Armenia) took place on 6 June in St. Petersburg within unofficial CIS summit.