President Ilham Aliyev: Armenian government’s attempts to change the negotiation format is unacceptable

President Ilham Aliyev: Armenian government’s attempts to change the negotiation format is unacceptable

Baku, Azerbaijan, March 15

Trend:

Negotiation format on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has been elaborated for many years and any attempt, on unilateral change is considered as an attempt to block the negotiation process with all responsibility on the side which tries to do it, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said.

The president made the remarks at the opening ceremony of the 7th Global Baku Forum, Trend reports referring to the Azerbaijani presidential press-service.

“Our people were the subject of ethnic cleansing and all our historical monuments on the occupied territories are destroyed by Armenian Armed Forces,” the president said. “And this is reflected in the report of the OSCE, that twice sent missions to find facts on the occupied territories.”

“Occupation of Azerbaijani lands is a brutal violation of international law and relevant resolutions and decisions of main international organizations,” he added. “UN Security Council adopted four resolutions demanding immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian troops, from our territories and they are not implemented by Armenia. The UN Secretary General, OSCE, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, European Parliament, Non-Aligned Movement and other organizations adopted similar resolutions and decisions.”

“They are based on international law,” President Aliyev said. “They are based on justice, and they create a legal framework for peaceful resolutions of the conflict. Status-quo is unacceptable, and presidents of the countries of the OSCE Minsk group which has a mandate to organized negotiations, on several occasions stated that the status-quo is unacceptable and must be changed. In order to do it, Armenia must start to withdraw its troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, and allow refugees and IDPs to return to their homeland.”

“Armenian government tries to change the negotiation format,” he said. “This is absolutely unacceptable and counterproductive and we consider it as an attempt to block negotiations process. And not only we think like that, we are glad that international organizations share this view.”

“Just recently OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs issued a statement actually sending a clear message to Armenia that their attempts to change negotiation format are not accepted,” the president added. “Couple of days earlier high officials of European Union, made the same statement.”

“Negotiation format has been elaborated for many years and any attempt, on unilateral change is considered as an attempt to block the negotiation process with all responsibility on the side which tries to do it,” he said. “Therefore, negotiations format cannot be changed.”

“Negotiations must be result-oriented not just for the sake of negotiations,” the president said. “Azerbaijan is ready to continue this process. And as a result of the negotiations, our territorial integrity must be restored.

“Territorial integrity is fundamental principle of international law,” President Aliyev said. “United Nations Charter, Helsinki Final Act has a very clear definition of the balance between territorial integrity and self-determination. Self-determination should not violate territorial integrity of countries. Therefore, the conflicts must be resolved based on international law norms, relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council, and based on territorial integrity of Azerbaijan.”

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