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TBILISI, April 5. /TASS/. Georgian President Georgy Margvelashvili urged the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan to exert maximum efforts to achieve a peaceful settlement of the tensions in Nagorno-Karabakh. He made the statement at an international people’s diplomacy forum held within the framework of the NATO Week in Georgia.
"We very much hope that the leaders of Armenian and Azerbaijan will exert maximum efforts for settling the tense situation by both peaceful and diplomatic means with the active participation in the international community for the conflict’s peaceful resolution," he said.
The situation along the line of engagement of the conflicting parties in Nagorno-Karabakh deteriorated dramatically overnight to April 2. Following fierce armed clashes at the contact line, the parties to the conflict accused each other of violating truce.
The conflict between neighboring Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up but was mainly populated by Armenians, broke out in the late 1980s.
In 1991-1994, the confrontation spilled over into large-scale military action for control over the enclave and some adjacent territories. Thousands left their homes on both sides in a conflict that killed 30,000. About a mission people became refugees. A truce was called between Armenia and the Nagorno-Karabakh republic on one side and Azerbaijan on the other in May 1994.
Talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement have been held on the basis of the so-called Madrid Principles suggested by co-chairs of the Minsk Group of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Russia, France and the United States in December 2007 in the Spanish capital. They include three key principles written in the Helsinki Final Act: refraining from the threat or use of force, territorial integrity and the right to self-determination.