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Azerbaijani president, U.S. state secretary note progress in Nagorno-Karabakh talks

June 30, 22:10 UTC+3 BAKU
The phone conversation occurred on the initiative of the American side
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BAKU, June 30. /TASS/. Meetings of the presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia, Ilham Aliyev and Serzh Sargsyan, on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement in Vienna and St. Petersburg gave new dynamics to the negotiating process aimed at solving the problem, Aliyev and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said during a phone conversation Thursday.

"Work to settle the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, conducted recently, was discussed during the conversation; it was noted that the Vienna and St. Petersburg meetings gave the negotiating process new dynamics," says a statement on the official website of the Azerbaijani leader.

The statement also noted that Kerry and Aliyev discussed prospects of the negotiating process. Besides, the sides "expressed satisfaction with the successful development of the Azerbaijani-American relations and exchanged views on the future cooperation."

The phone conversation occurred on the initiative of the American side.

The situation along the line of contact in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone deteriorated dramatically overnight to April 2, and fierce clashes began. The parties to the conflict accused each other of violating the truce. The defense ministries of Armenia and Azerbaijan agreed on a ceasefire with Russia's mediation and later reported that hostilities stopped in Nagorno-Karabakh from 11:00 a.m. Moscow Time April 5.

Talks on Nagorno-Karabakh 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.

Nagorno-Karabakh sought independence from Azerbaijan at the end of the 1980s, which resulted in a war between Azerbaijan and Armenia that claimed the lives of 25,000-30,000 people between 1988 and 1994. Since then, the territory has been controlled by Armenia.

The OSCE Minsk Group acts as a mediator. It is a mechanism designed to promote a peace solution to the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh.

The group is led by co-chairs France, Russia and the United States. It also comprises Belarus, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Finland, and Turkey, as well as Armenia and Azerbaijan.

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