Kremlin: Azerbaijan and Armenia make positions on Madrid principles closer
The Presidents of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and Armenia Serzh Sargsyan during the talks with their Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev confirmed their readiness to continue dialogue on agreeing upon the Madrid principles for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement, the press secretary of the Russian president Natalia Timakova said, RIA Novosti reported.
Basic principles for the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement, known as the Madrid principles, were presented to Armenia and Azerbaijan by the Foreign Ministers of France and Russia and the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State in November 2007 in the Spanish capital. At the meeting of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan in Sochi in January, the OSCE Minsk Group submitted the parties an updated version of the Madrid document.
"There was mentioned the rapprochement of parties' positions on a number of disputable provisions of the text of the basic principles of settlement," said Timakova, noting that the trilateral meeting covered key problems of the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement.
"The presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia confirmed readiness to continue dialogue aimed at finalizing the document with the mediation of Russia, USA and France as co-chairs of OSCE Minsk Group," she 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. Since signing the ceasefire agreement in 1994 the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France, and the U.S. - have been holding the peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh region and the occupied territories that were taken in 1990s.