Azerbaijani FM: Regional stability can’t be achieved without addressing territorial conflicts in OSCE area (UPDATE 2)
Details added (first version posted at 15:15)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 5
By Viktoriya Zhavoronkova and Aygun Badalova - Trend:
Azerbaijan hopes that the Roadmap suggested by the incoming Swiss and Serbian Chairmanships will provide an ample opportunity to register progress in most problematic areas such as resolution of protracted conflicts and arms control, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said at the OSCE Ministerial Council held in Kiev on Dec. 5.
"The assumption that Confidence and Security Building Measures (CSBMs) and regional cooperation in itself have a potential of resolving a conflict when political and security consequences of the conflict have not been properly addressed, is utopian," Mammadyarov said.
Azerbaijan believes that basic principles as they reflected in the joint statement of the presidents of Minsk Group co-chairmen countries in L'Aquilla in 2009 could serve as a basis for opening substantive talks on comprehensive peace agreement, the Azerbaijani FM noted.
Azerbaijan attaches the utmost importance to fully utilizing the OSCE's comparative advantage of being the only regional body with such a unique comprehensive security concept as well as broad and diverse membership, the minister said.
"It is our conviction that dialogue and respect for undiminishing value of the Helsinki guiding principles of 1975 are the imperatives for realizing the core functions of OSCE," Azerbaijani minister said. "Experience of Azerbaijan in the United Nations Security Council and our collective efforts with partner nations proved that dialogue and cooperation, based on full respect to the norms and principles of international law, is a best remedy to restore trust and stabilize volatile political and security environment".
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.