Civil Society Should Participate in Settlement of Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict, Azerbaijani NGOs Urge
Azerbaijan, Baku, 3 October / corr. Trend K.Zarbaliyeva / Representatives of the Azerbaijani Non-Government Organizations (NGO) consider participation of citizen society in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict as important
The leading NGO representatives of Azerbaijan initiated such an offer at a meeting with the US Deputy Secretary of State John D. Negroponte in Baku on 3 October.
Armenia has occupied 20% of Azerbaijanїs lands including Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding seven regions. The occupation began in 1988. Azerbaijan lost the Nagorno-Karabakh, except of Shusha and Khojali, in December 1991. In 1992-93, Armenian Armed Forces occupied Shusha, Khojali and Nagorno-Karabakhїs seven surrounding regions. In 1994, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement at which time the active hostilities ended. The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group ( Russia, France, and the US) are currently holding peaceful, but fruitless negotiations.
"Considering Azerbaijan's cooperation with NATO as important, the NGO representatives believe that this cooperation will assist Azerbaijan in its integration into Europe and stabilization of situation in Caucasus," Saida Gojamanli, a lawyer, who participated in the meeting, told Trend .
The meeting focused on democratization in Azerbaijan and South Caucasus, state of human rights, freedom of speech, assembly and religion, as well as struggle against human trafficking, she said.
The participants of the meeting considered important to establish close relations between the authorities and civil society and to create equal conditions for all political parties functioning in the country.
The guest held negotiations with the President and Foreign Minister in Baku on 2 October.
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