OSCE concerns over situation on Armenian-Azerbaijani contact line
Azerbaijan, Baku, Sept. 13 / Trend /
The OSCE is concerned over the situation on the contact line between Armenian and Azerbaijani armed forces, Director of the OSCE Conflict Prevention Center Adam Kobieracki said in an interview with the Moskovskie Novosti newspaper.
"Over 20 incidents occurred in 2011 which have resulted in death. Reports of civilian casualties have caused particular concern," he said.
Kobieracki said during his visits to Armenia and Azerbaijan that he urged the sides to remove snipers from the contact zone.
"I regret that the parties have not yet fulfilled the agreement achieved in Sochi in 2011 regarding the investigation of incidents along the ceasefire line. I believe it is very important to keep pressure on both sides. Therefore, I welcome the Russian president's personal participation in promoting negotiations between Azerbaijan and Armenia," 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 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 peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and its surrounding regions.