Syria advocates equitable settlement of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict: FM

Politics Materials 3 June 2009 13:23 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, June 3 / Trend , U.Sadikhova/

Syria advocates equitable settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, which will meet interests of the both sides, Syrian Foreign Minister Valid Al Muallim said in Baku.

"Our position is to find a political solution to the problem through a direct dialogue. Prior to my visit to Baku, I went to Armenia. I saw that the sides have the desire to sign a peace agreement, and everything must be done to the conflict to be resolved in the near future," Al Muallim said.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and 7 surrounding districts. Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France, and the U.S. - are currently holding the peace negotiations.

The sides have to show courage and political will to reach equitable settlement of the conflict. "Syria supports the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan," he added.

Syrian Foreign Minister is on a state visit to Baku. He have discussed the preparations to the first visit of Syrian President Bashar Assad to Azerbaijan that to be made in early June.

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