OSCE prepares meeting between Presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia
This autumn, under the auspices of the OSCE, a meeting of the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan might be held. As the Secretary General of the organization Lamberto Zannier stated, "what is happening in the conflict zone, including the growth of violence, which is observed not only in Nagorno-Karabakh, but also on the border of Armenia and Azerbaijan, causes concern, so it is necessary to provide international support for the process of a settlement of the conflict."
However, according to the data of the Permanent Representation of Azerbaijan to the OSCE, any initiative of Baku to revitalize the activity of the OSCE Minsk Group meets resistance from the Armenian side. "Our appeals to the mediating countries and members of the Minsk Group to persuade Armenia in taking steps to promote the negotiating process do not receive sufficient support from the OSCE participating states. Such an indifferent attitude, demonstrated by the Minsk Group, seems to suggest that the OSCE is satisfied with the current situation and the status quo on the occupied territories of Azerbaijan," the statement of the permanent mission says. Baku believes that measures such as the withdrawal of snipers and surveillance activities of the OSCE on the contact line of troops will remain ineffective without the withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.
International diplomatic activity in the Karabakh direction intensified after the recent statement by the Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan about the fact, that Nagorno-Karabakh is an integral part of Armenia, which caused confusion in Baku.
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev pointed out that the international community and international organizations recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as Azerbaijani territory. In his opinion, "the statement, which was made in such a tense psychological situation, exposes and shames the Armenian leadership."
In this regard, at yesterday's meeting of the Cabinet of Ministries, Aliyev stated that the priority sphere of the government activities in the next year will be the construction of the army, and the necessary funds will be allocated for it. Now Azerbaijan buys new equipment, weapons and ammunition, builds towns and military bases for military units. This year, a large base of the Naval Forces was put into operation. A new infrastructure in the regions, located close to the line of contact, is being created.
Aliyev said that in the last month another provocation was suppressed there. Numerous diversionists, most of whom are citizens of Armenia, were organized and mobilized for the attack on the Azerbaijani positions. They were destroyed by a preemptive strike on the territory of Azerbaijan. "Armenia carries out an aggressive policy in our lands. Unfortunately, the international community, the mediators, do not want to see it, do not send serious signals to the occupier," Aliyev complained.
He urged people, especially senior officials, to be responsible for their words, because the complicated situation in Armenia is already forcing people to leave the country: "They even migrate to Azerbaijan and live here peacefully. Because in Azerbaijan there can be no confrontation, no misunderstanding on ethnic or religious grounds."
The US co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, James Warlick, also warned the Armenian leadership about reckless statements, saying that Nagorno-Karabakh cannot be recognized by Armenia as an independent entity, because this move would lead to "a dangerous military response" from Azerbaijan. The diplomat reminded that today the region has an extremely high level of tension, and warned Armenia against steps that could lead to a further escalation of the conflict. "The co-chairs will visit the region at end of this month to meet with the presidents and prepare for their next summit. We expect that their meeting will help to advance the negotiations and contribute to the stabilization of the security situation," James Warlick added.