Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.11
By Anakhanum Khidayatova - Trend:
OSCE Minsk Group looks forward to working closely with the German chairman-in-office in 2016 on resolving the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the US co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group James Warlick exclusively told Trend.
"The Germans have committed themselves to supporting the co-chairs in our efforts to mediate a negotiated settlement to the conflict," said Warlick.
He pointed out that at the OSCE Ministerial Council held in Belgrade on Dec.3-4, the co-chairs had the opportunity to meet with the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia, Elmar Mammadyarov and Edward Nalbandian to finalize plans for a summit meeting of the two countries' presidents.
"We believe that the time has come - after more than one year - for the presidents to meet face-to-face for a constructive discussion on the way forward," said Warlick.
Commenting on Russia's new proposals on resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, he said that there are proposals under consideration by the sides that have the full support of the co-chairs.
Earlier, following the visit of Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to the region, Mammadyarov said that Russia made proposals on settling the conflict.
"Minister Lavrov brings considerable experience as a mediator in the conflict and we welcome his involvement and commitment to working with the co-chairs," said Warlick.
"Our shared goal is to find a negotiated settlement to the conflict in the interest of all people in the region," the US co-chair added.
He pointed out that the US remains committed to helping bring an end to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
The two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the US are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the UN Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.
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