Baku, Azerbaijan, May 4
Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry welcomes the statement of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov regarding the issue of Armenia's recognition of illegal regime established in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry's Spokesman Hikmet Hajiyev told Trend May 4.
Azerbaijan has always declared its readiness for the substantive negotiations that will lead to the liberation of its territories, he added.
Previously, the head of the Russian foreign ministry, Sergey Lavrov, said that Moscow sees no problems in the initiative of the Armenian MPs to recognize the occupation regime of Nagorno-Karabakh, because Yerevan assures that the region's status won't be determined unilaterally.
"It's not the Armenian government that discusses it, this is a proposal by two Armenia's MPs," said Lavrov.
Hikmet Hajiyev said that Azerbaijan civilian population, compactly living along the contact line of troops suffer from ceasefire violations. There are no civilians in the occupied territories controlled by Armenia, he added.
"Preventing violations of the ceasefire and creating a mechanism for investigating incidents should be an integral part of the process of withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan", Hikmet Hajiyev said.
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 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.