Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 9
By Fikret Dolukhanov - Trend:
The United States supports efforts aimed at establishment of trust between Armenia and Azerbaijan and expansion of dialogue in regard to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Armenian media reported, referring to Acting Deputy Chief of the US Mission to OSCE Gregory Macris, who made the remarks in an address during the session of the OSCE Permanent Council.
He said that the US is encouraged by recent constructive contacts by the sides at the levels of heads of state and foreign ministers.
"These contacts appear to be paying direct and positive dividends. All three Co-Chairs and the CiO’s Personal Representative reported today a decrease in violence along the Line of Contact and in conflict-affected areas over the past two months," Macris said.
He underlined that the conflict has gone on far too long and it is time for the sides to refrain from mutual accusations and recriminations and prepare their populations for peace.
"The US supports confidence-building measures and increased dialogue between Armenians and Azerbaijanis that can stabilize the security situation and create a more constructive atmosphere for negotiations," Macris noted.
He also said that the US attaches great importance to resolving conflicts in the OSCE area, including the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with the strong engagement of the Minsk Group Co-Chairs.
"That is why the United States has sent high-level envoys such as National Security Advisor John Bolton and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State George Kent to Armenia and Azerbaijan in recent weeks," he said.
Macris concluded by saying that the US shares the view that even though there can be no military solution to this conflict, the status quo is unacceptable.
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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