Bryza: Presidential meeting on Karabakh issue gives impetus to conflict’s political settlement
Baku, Azerbaijan, June 22
By Anakhanum Idayatova – Trend:
The summit on the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in St. Petersburg has created a favorable psychological atmosphere for further progress of the political process, Matthew Bryza, former US assistant secretary for South Caucasus and former US ambassador to Azerbaijan, told Trend June 22.
Presidents of Russia, Azerbaijan and Armenia, Vladimir Putin, Ilham Aliyev and Serzh Sargsyan held a meeting in St. Petersburg June 20 with the participation of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs.
Bryza said the presidents agreed to work to create the political atmosphere required to resume talks on a political settlement.
The Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents also agreed to move forward regarding the agreements reached in Vienna on May 16 on reducing tensions along the line of contact and to increase the number of the OSCE observers, he noted.
“It is positive that the meeting took place,” added Bryza.
The first meeting of the Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents after the escalation of the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh in early April was held in Vienna on May 16.
Matthew Bryza further said that with his participation at the St. Petersburg meeting, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin is trying to show the world, especially the European Union that he is trying to be a peacemaker.
At the very moment he wants the EU to lift the sanctions imposed on Russia after the Ukraine crisis, Bryza said.
President Putin’s participation at the meeting can be considered as positive, because, eventually, the meeting was held within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group, added Bryza.
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.
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