Baku: Nagorno-Karabakh could become Azerbaijan's South Tyrol

Baku: Nagorno-Karabakh could become Azerbaijan's South Tyrol

The leadership of Azerbaijan has never refused the possibility of granting self-government to Nagorno-Karabakh, head of Foreign Policy Affairs Department of the Presidential Administration, Hikmat Hajiyev said in an interview published today in El Mundo.

He recalled that for 30 years the Azerbaijani side participated in the negotiations in order to come to an agreement, which in the end could not be reached, thus showing "strategic patience". According to Hajiyev, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan did everything possible to destroy the last hope for a peaceful outcome.

"We have never ruled out (possibility) of granting Nagorno-Karabakh self-government within the borders of Azerbaijan. Like in the South Tyrol region (in Italy) or on the Finnish Aland Islands ... But you cannot change the internationally recognized borders by force," TASS cited Hajiyev as saying.

In addition, the presidential aide indicated that Baku oes not yet support the idea of including Russian military observers within the ceasefire monitoring mechanism in Nagorno-Karabakh. "Azerbaijan is conducting operations not in the territory of another country, but in [the territory] under its sovereignty, and we do not think that sending those military is appropriate right now," the politician explained.

The Armenian armed forces committed a large-scale provocation, subjecting the positions of the Azerbaijani army to intensive shelling from large-caliber weapons, mortars, and artillery installations of various calibers in the front-line zone on Sept. 27 at 05:00 (Msk). The command of the Azerbaijani Army decided to launch a counter-offensive operation of Azerbaijani troops along the entire front to suppress the combat activity of the Armenian armed forces and ensure the safety of the civilian population. To date, the city of Jabrayil and most of the Jabrayil district, the city of Hadrut, more than half of the Fizuli district were liberated in the south, and the strategically important Murovdag mountain and the so-called sixth fortified area around the village of Sugovushan in the north were liberated.

At the talks held at in Moscow, Baku and Yerevan agreed on a humanitarian ceasefire, which came into effect at 12:00 local time on October 10. Armenia violated ceasefire by shelling Azerbaijan's second-largest city of Ganja, which caused civilian casualties.

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