Socio-Political Figures of Azerbaijan Discuss Karabakh Problem

Azerbaijan, Baku / Тrend corr S. Ilhamgizi / Azerbaijani opposition leaders, politicians, and intellectuals has participated in the event held at the 'Let Us Unite Around Karabakh' office of the Socio-Democratic Party of Azerbaijan (SDPA). The viewpoints in this connection were voiced at the gathering.

The co-chairman of the SDPA, Araz Alizadeh, said that he was agree with all the proposals of the Azerbaijani President's latest statement on the negotiations with Armenia, except two of them, holding a referendum in Nagorno-Karabakh, and introduction of peacekeeping forces into the region. "The world practice displays that peacekeeping forces always act in the interest of either their country or big powers," he said.

The chairman of the Adalat Party, MP Ilyas Ismayilov, said that the belief into help of international organizations in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was lost. The four UN resolutions have not been implemented yet. The OSCE Minsk Group's co-chairmen-countries stick to their own interests in the region and fail to come to agreement.

Quoting the statement by the President on possible liberation of the occupied territories by war, the leader of the Azerbaijani national Independence Party (ANIP), Etibar Mammadov, said that the necessity in the occasion had occurred long ago.

The chairman of the Musavat Party, Isa Gambar, noted that the analogue Karabakh-related event was held in 1997, but the decisions made at the meeting were not fulfilled.

The leader of the 'In the Name of Azerbaijan' Forum, Eldar Namazov, mentioned the fruitlessness of the Karabakh Charter established in 2001.

The chairman of the Classic Popular Front Party, Mirmahmoud Miralioughlu, stated that Armenians were benefiting from the ceasefire between the conflict sides. " Azerbaijan has not formed an army strong enough in this period. We did not inform the world's community of the real situation with Nagorno-Karabakh on the necessary level," Miralioghlu added.

The chairman of the Citizen and Development Party, Ali Aliyev, said that he considered free, democratic elections to be an important aspect in the settlement of the conflict.

Politician Rasim Musabeyov said that there were definite achievements in the solution of Nagorno-Karabakh problem. According to the politician, in 2008 Russian troops will be withdrawn from South Caucasus. Later, Georgia will integrate into NATO and Azerbaijan should take benefit from it.

Politician Mubariz Ahmadoghlu indicated the important steps towards solution of the Karabakh problem and called the present 'a golden stage'. According to Ahmadoughlu, it will be possible to achieve more success within May, 2007-March, 2008.

MP Panah Huseyn said that discussions on Nagorno-Karabakh should be held in the parliament with participation of opposition parties, as well as representatives of community.

Despite the invitation the representatives of the governing New Azerbaijan Party were not in attendance.

As a result of the meeting, the decision to go on with the discussions on Nagorno-Karabakh was made.

The conflict between two South Caucasus countries broke out in 1988 in face of Armenia's territorial claims to Azerbaijan. Since 1992, 20% of Azerbaijani territories (Nagorno-Karabakh and 7 nearby regions) have been under occupation by Armenian Armed Forces. In May, 1994 a ceasefire was signed between the sides. The talks under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chaired by Russia, France, and the United States are still fruitless.

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