Baku, Azerbaijan, May 10
By Anakhanum Idayatova - Trend:
If Armenia were to unilaterally recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent state this would have very serious consequences, Amanda Paul, geopolitical and foreign policy analyst, journalist at the European Policy Centre (EPC), told Trend May 10.
Such a step should be considered reckless because apart from the fact that it would be a highly provocative move which could well lead to a new military confrontation it would also destroy the credibility of Armenia in the peace process over the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Paul said.
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 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.
Armenia's Foreign Ministry made a statement on May 5 saying that the rumors about the decision of the Armenian government regarding two MPs' initiatives to recognize the "independence" of Azerbaijan's Nagorno-Karabakh region are groundless.
The statement read that the government's decision doesn't mean approval of that initiative.
A unilateral recognition of Nagorno-Karabakh's independence without a referendum would basically mean the violation of the set of so-called Basic (Madrid) Principles for the settlement of the conflict promoted by the OSCE Minsk Group, Paul said.
Armenia would almost certainly come under severe international criticism for such a step, she said.
Hence, the current discussion on recognition of "independence" of Nagorno-Karabakh is almost certainly aimed at domestic consumption rather than a serious change of policy as Armenia would have nothing to gain from such a radical move, the analyst said.
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