Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov.17
By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:
If French MPs meet with Bako Sahakyan, “head” of the separatist regime, created in occupied Azerbaijani territories, that could be contrary to France's status as OSCE Minsk Group co-chairing country, Matthew Bryza, former US ambassador to Azerbaijan and former co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, told Trend Nov.16.
He was commenting on the visit of Sahakyan to France.
“Sahakyan has also visited the United States and Russia, which had no discernible impact on either the Minsk Group co-chairs' mediation efforts or on the bilateral relations of Azerbaijan with the co-chair countries,” noted Bryza.
He pointed out that Azerbaijan is an important partner and friend of all three countries, and its importance is growing.
“Of course, if the French government and/or parliament treated Sahakyan as anything other than a private person, that could cause serious tension in Azerbaijan's relations with France. I don't expect that to occur. That said, individual French parliamentarians may decide to meet with Sahakyan on an individual basis, which I would view as inappropriate and contrary to France's status as a Minsk Group co-chair,” Bryza concluded.
Earlier, Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that France’s constant double standards approach makes Azerbaijan reconsider its ties with that country.
Bako Sahakyan's visit to France, presenting himself as the “head” of the separatist regime established in the occupied Azerbaijani territories, is another unsuccessful attempt to encourage that puppet entity at the international level, the Foreign Ministry said.
“France, which created conditions for that visit and accepted "representatives" of the illegal regime, by this step not only violates the spirit of bilateral relations and the signed agreements, but also demonstrates disregard for supremacy of norms and principles of international law and the undertaken obligations,” reads the statement.
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.
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