Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 15
Azerbaijan sent a protest note to the US in connection with a meeting of the OSCE Minsk Group's US Co-chair James Warlick with the "foreign minister" of the separatist regime created by Armenia in Azerbaijan's occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region.
The protest note was handed over to the US Ambassador in Baku Robert Cekuta by Deputy Foreign Minister Mahmud Mammadguliyev, said the press office of the Foreign Ministry of Azerbaijan.
"Participation of the OSCE Minsk Group's US co-chair in the activities aimed against the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan is completely contrary to the mandate of a co-chairing institution of the Minsk Group, and casts shadow on its neutrality and impartiality," read the protest note.
"Such a step is also contrary to the official policy of the US on the non-recognition of legitimacy of the situation created through the use of force against Azerbaijan's territorial integrity, accompanied with ethnic cleansing, flagrant violation of international norms and principles," the document said.
In its note, Azerbaijan also informed the US Department of State that creation of conditions in the US for the so-called representatives of the separatist regime for participation in public campaigns and other activities there, don't help to achieve progress in the talks over the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict, but rather exacerbates a process that is already complicated.
Azerbaijan also stressed that the lack of an adequate response to the provocative actions of Armenia leads to an increase in Yerevan's sense of impunity.
Azerbaijan expressed hope that the US will remain committed to implementation of internationally agreed resolutions and decisions, as well as to non-recognition of the illegal regime created by Armenia in the occupied Azerbaijani territories.
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 two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the US are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the UN Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.