Trend's exclusive interview with the head of Committee on Defense and Security of the Parliamentary Assembly of NATO, Zachary Selden, which is member of a delegation to visit Azerbaijan shortly
Question: What are the objectives of your forthcoming visit to Azerbaijan? Who do you plan to visit during the visit?
Answer: Our objective is to allow our members to educate themselves about the developments in Azerbaijan. To that end, we plan to meet with high level officials in the Ministries of Defence, Foreign Affairs and other relevant government institutions. We also will meet with Ambassadors from NATO countries and members of civic organizations. In addition, our visit is an opportunity for the delegation to meet with members of the Azeri delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and their colleagues on the relevant committees in the parliament.
Question: Will your visit to Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan be followed by new regional report or alterations to your previous report, introduced during the spring session of PA NATO?
Answer: We will update the spring report with our findings from this visit and the final version of the report will be made available to the public in December.
Question: Have any sanctions been applied to official Yerevan to prevent reiteration of the incidents like that one occurred during the visit of a NATO Representative Mr. Vahit Erdem to Armenia?
Answer: The President of the Assembly has drawn the attention of the Speaker of the Armenian Parliament to the issue. No further action is expected.
Question: What assistance could PA NATO provide in the resolution of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict?
Answer The NATO Parliamentary Assembly will continue to play a constructive role by fostering discussion among the interested parties. For example, we organized the Rose-Roth Seminar in Sochi, Russia this past June to promote regional dialogue. It is vital that any settlement of the regional conflicts be reached through dialogue and consensus-building among the states and peoples of the region. Our role is to help promote that dialogue and allow our members the opportunity to exchange views with their counterparts in the region. We plan to hold additional seminars in the region in 2007 to offer more opportunities for discussion.
Question: During visits to Baku the NATO leadership noted that a path for Azerbaijan's entrance to the Euro-Atlantic alliance is open. How do you estimate the implementation of the Individual Partnership Action Plan between Azerbaijan and NATO? Is it necessary for an addition to this document?
Answer: We maintain that the path to Euro-Atlantic integration should remain open to all those who aspire to it and share the values embodied in the Transatlantic alliance. It would be premature for us to comment on the IPAP as part of the purpose of our visit it to help us understand more about the implementation of Azerbaijan's IPAP.