U.S. co-chair of Minsk Group: It is time to take necessary steps for Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement (UPDATE)

Detailes added. (First version was posted at 11:10)

Azerbaijan, Baku, September 10 /Trend, S.Ahmadova/

It is time to take necessary steps for the settlement of Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, U.S co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, James Warlick told journalists in Baku on Tuesday.

"After more than 20 years, the time has come to end suffering and hatred," Warlick said, added that it is time for all sides to work together for settlement based on principles of final Helsinki act.

"It is also time for co-chairs of the Minsk group and the Minsk group itself, for the governments of Azerbaijan and Armenia and the countries in the region to work together and take necessary steps for the settlement of the conflict for the peace and prosperity of the region," Warlick said.

Warlick stressed that it is his first visit to the region to meet with the leaders of Azerbaijan, Armenia and travel to Nagorno-Karabakh. "I am here to listen and to learn as much as I can," he said, added that he is looking forward to work closely with his fellow co-chairs for lasting settlement of the conflict.

"Importantly I want not look to the past but look to the future for practical settlement of the conflict," he said.

Warlick also mentioned that he will return to the US at the end of the week.

"I will stop up in Vienna and have opportunity to meet with the OSCE Secretary General. I am looking forward to meet with OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs in New York on the margins of the UN General Assembly. My first goal is to work with my fellow co-chairs for adorable settlement of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. I am a first American co-chair that will work at this full time," Warlick said.

"I want to move forward with realism and pragmatism to help all sides to find adorable solution that will lead to lasting settlement," Warlick added.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 per cent 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 the surrounding regions.

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