Russia, Moscow, 1 August / Trend corr. R.Agayev/ Exchange of territories is not on agenda of the peace negotiations on settlement of Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. "Exchange of territories is not on agenda at the moment," Azerbaijan's Minister for Foreign Affairs Elmar Mammadyarov said at a briefing in Moscow on 1 August, commenting on the consultations with his Armenian counterpart Edward Nalbandyan.
Exchange of territories between Azerbaijan and Armenia in order to settle the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was again exaggerated by media in the region. Experts said exchange of territories would improve the trust and would promote achievement of stable peace between the countries.
Exchange of territories was suggested for the first time by American analyst Paul Goble in mid 90s.
The conflict between the two countries of the South Caucasus began in 1988 due to Armenian territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Since 1992, Armenian Armed Forces have occupied 20% of Azerbaijan including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and its seven surrounding districts. In 1994, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement at which time the active hostilities ended. The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Russia, France, and the US) are currently holding peaceful negotiations.
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