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Azerbaijani envoy says no progress achieved by OSCE on Nagorno-Karabakh issue

July 03, 2017, 14:40 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, July 3. /TASS/. The OSCE Minsk Group on settling the Nagorno-Karabakh issue has not yet achieved the desired results, Azerbaijan’s Ambassador to Russia Polad Bulbuloglu said in an interview with TASS.

"The group, which includes three permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, looks impressive, since these countries have great political weight and huge experience gained by their diplomats over decades," he said. "However, we see that the OSCE Minsk Group, set up in 1997, has been unable to reach the desired results, paving the way for the repairing of the damage caused by military activities and finding a political solution to the conflict," Bulbuloglu added.

"Azerbaijan has been emphasizing that the time has long come to take effective steps to resolve the conflict," he went on to say. "The current status quo, particularly the ongoing occupation of Azerbaijan’s territory, is unacceptable," the ambassador pointed out.

According to him, "there is a need to create conditions for substantive talks aimed at achieving actual results, which requires political will." "Talks should be specific, because in this particular case, it the result that matters and not the process," he concluded.

Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

The highland region of Nagorno-Karabakh (or Mountainous Karabakh) is a mostly Armenian-populated enclave inside Azerbaijan’s territory. It is a self-proclaimed independent republic, not recognized by any of the United Nations member states.

In 1988, hostilities broke out there between the forces reporting to the Baku government and Armenian residents. In 1994, a ceasefire was reached but relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia has remained strained ever since.

Azerbaijan insists that its territorial integrity should be restored, refugees should return to Nagorno-Karabakh, and after that talks about its status could begin. Baku is ready to grant autonomy to the region, but is unwilling to hold direct talks with Nagorno-Karabakh. At the same time, Armenia strongly opposes the region’s reunification with Azerbaijan and says that its right to self-determination should be considered first.

Russia, France and the United States co-chair the Minsk Group of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) which seeks to broker an end to the conflict.

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