Mikhail Bocharnikov: Russia to continue assistance in settlement of Karabakh conflict
Russia is ready to continue to provide its assistance in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict within the OSCE Minsk Group, Russian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Mikhail Bocharnikov said at a press conference.
"Our goal is to render all possible assistance to the parties of the conflict to enable them to agree between each other. The solution that is acceptable for the parties of the conflict will be acceptable for us as well," the diplomat explained.
He also pointed out the importance of signing the Convention on the status of the Caspian Sea, saying that it is a historic event. According to Bocharnikov, the most important factor is that this Convention has been signed by five fully independent states, which primarily take into account their own interests.
The diplomat also said that Russia and Azerbaijan are working on the organization of the forum of interregional cooperation, as well as the implementation of the regular meeting of the intergovernmental commission.
According to him, the current priority is for the presidents of the two countries to discuss practical issues. "These friendly contacts between the presidents of our countries set the tone for the diverse and multifaceted cooperation between Russia and Azerbaijan. The current agenda includes organizing an interregional cooperation forum to be held in Ganja in early October," he said, adding that this will be a big meeting with the participation of businessmen, officials, representatives of the corresponding ministries of the regions of our countries.
The ambassador said that the next meeting of the intergovernmental commission, co-chaired by Azerbaijani Minister of Economy Shahin Mustafayev and Russian Minister of Economic Development Maxim Oreshkin must also take place till the end of the year. "This is also one of the tasks, at the first stage of my activity here, that is, until the end of this year," he added. "I said about the state tasks. As for me personally as an ambassador, the task is to establish close contacts with officials and public representatives and also try to get to know the country," Bocharnikov said.
According to the diplomat, Moscow and Baku are planning to sign a large package of documents in the near future, adding that the package will include elements of cooperation in the economic and humanitarian spheres. "This package of documents will set a fundamental approach to economic cooperation. We primarily aim to increase our trade turnover; in 2017, it amounted to about $2.6 billion. We hope for its further growth," he stressed.
Bocharnikov noted that both countries also intend to continue to develop cooperation in industry, transportation and a number of other sectors of economy. "Soon we will witness the creation of joint ventures with participation of Russian capital, which will create the foundation for our further rapprochement," the ambassador stated.
He also noted that the work of the business councils of the two countries, in which the chairmen were replaced, has intensified recently.
Further, the Ambassador said that multiculturalism and tolerance further enhance the prestige of Azerbaijan.
The diplomat conveyed his congratulations on occasion of the upcoming Eid al-Adha. "This is a very great bright holiday that brings up everybody in accordance with the ideals of love and mercy. I was just beginning my stay in Azerbaijan when on another occasion I heard the speech of the Chairman of the Caucasus Muslim Clerical Board, Sheikh Ul Islam Haji Allahshukur Pashazade, who noted that Muslims in Azerbaijan enjoy equality and all the benefits of multiculturalism and tolerance in the country. I am very pleased to hear that. Multiculturalism and tolerance are the factors that improve international prestige of Azerbaijan and increase the respect which Azerbaijan enjoys internationally. Therefore, I want to once again congratulate everyone on occasion of the upcoming holiday and wish everyone good health, happiness and prosperity" the diplomat said.