Azerbaijani FM: Renaming of cities in occupied territories testifies presence of radical forces in Armenia
The fact of renaming settlements in the occupied lands of Azerbaijan, including Agdam, is laughable. It does not change the situation, Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov was quoted by Turkish news agency Cihan as saying.
"Renaming of cities testifies that there are radical forces in Armenia that do not want peace in the region. They do not want to stabilize the relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia," he told media in Istanbul.
Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov is in Turkey on a working visit.
Mammadyarov participates in the Fourth Regional Economic Cooperation Conference on Afghanistan.
Agdam was renamed into Akna in early November upon a decision of the government of the self-proclaimed "Nagorno-Karabakh Republic". It became one of the quarters of Askeran city.
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 seven 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 negotiations to resolve the dispute.
Armenia has failed to implement U.N. Security Council resolutions stipulating the liberation of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding regions.