The OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Spanish Foreign Minister, Miguel Angel Moratinos, said to Мediamax agency in an exclusive interview that Armenia and Azerbaijan have to use the present opportunity for settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
"I know that both countries seek to overcome current difficulties. So, I am in an optimistic mood. Both sides have to use this opportunity. It is time to make the move," the Chairman, who begins his visit to Baku and Yerevan on 4 June, said.
Miguel Angel Moratinos said in the interview that his meeting with the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairmen in Madrid at the beginning of May was very fruitful. "I congratulate the Ambassadors Mr Facier and Merzlakov, and the US Assistant Deputy Secretary of State, Mathew Bryza, on perfect work and express my gratitude to Armenian and Azerbaijani authorities for their willingness to cooperate with the mediators for a settlement to the conflict," Moratinos said.
Speaking on whether he believed in the willingness of Azerbaijan to agree on holding a referendum in Nagorno-Karabakh, Moratinos said, "It is not easy to balance sovereignty and territorial integrity with the right to self-determination. Both of them are universal principles used in different circumstances. I am confident that Azerbaijan and Armenia can find a way out through principles more convenient for settlement of the situation which harms thousands of people who have the right to a worthy, peaceful and happy life."
Commenting on the fact that one of the OSCE Minsk Group's co-chairmen, Russia, states that possible independence of Kosovo can become a precedent for other lingering conflicts, while the other two co-chairmen, France and the United States, stick to the opposite, the OSCE Chairman-in-Office said, "The conflicts in the OSCE territory greatly diverse. France, Russia and the United States being co-chairmen do not consider it expedient to use providential formulas as the diverse situations will make the formulas unable to function."