Italy, Venice, June 5 / Trend, I.Kashchey /
A proposal of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe to resume the Sub-Committee on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict aimed at strengthening of the dialogue, Arif Mammadov, Azerbaijan's permanent representative to the Council of Europe believes.
"The Armenian delegation is against the restoration of the Sub-Committee due to reasons that are unknown to us. Although legally it is just another tool for the dialogue, discussions over the issues regarding the Karabakh problem at the level of the Parliamentary Assembly", Mammadov said in an exclusive interview with Trend in Venice, where the Venice Commission's anniversary is celebrated today.
The PACE Sub-Committee on Nagorno-Karabakh has suspended its activity about a year ago in connection with its chairman Lord Russell-Johnston's death. The last spring session of the PACE discussed restoration of the Sub-committee, headed by acting Chairman of the PACE Mevlut Cavusoglu.
The Armenian side is in the position that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be resolved within the OSCE Minsk Group, and any other intermediation will hinder the process.
"Of course, it is a negative signal to PACE, in fact, any side that refuses dialogue is a sign for the PACE that it is not ready to talk about serious problems. The side, ready to help, always looks better in the eyes of the Europeans", he said.
"PACE has always differed with its objectivity and impartiality. It wants to help resolve the conflict and bring the various issues such as cultural heritage or the issue of inter-communal dialogue to the agenda ", Mammadov said. Mevlut Cavusoglu, initiator of resuming the Sub-committee was recently in Yerevan, where he again raised this issue, he said, stressing that a specific signal from the Armenian side has not yet received.
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 region and the occupied territories.
"PACE has resolution № 14-16 that in principle satisfies us. It is objective, accepts the fact of occupation of the Azerbaijani territories by Armenia and calls for the withdrawal of troops", he said.
To his opinion, the Council of Europe as an organization dealt with human rights, democracy and supremacy of law can play a positive role both in the conflict, and in the post-conflict period. The last will envisage the restoration of the rights of the Azerbaijani population, which will return to their homes, restoration of the cultural heritage: the Azerbaijani museums, cultural centers, graveyards, Mammadov said.