Shavarsh Kocharyan: It’s Azerbaijan hindering progress in the Karabakh talks

“There is the Madrid document, which the parties have adopted as a basis for negotiations. This does not mean the parties have accepted all principles enlisted in it. Corresponding attitude from all parties is needed to achieve progress in the negotiations. In the given case it’s Azerbaijan’s position that hinders progress in the talks,” Armenian Deputy Foreign Minister Shavarsh Kocharyan told reporters at the National Assembly, as he commented on the recent statement of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs.

Asked whether he’s not concerned about some formulations in the statement namely, the Co-Chairs note that “the ceasefire agreement did not resolve the underlying conflict, left the territories surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh occupied and failed to provide a path forward on status for Nagorno-Karabakh.” Commenting on this, Kocharyan said “these are the two issues on which there is obviously no agreement, and this is what the Co-Chairs point to.”

Shavarsh Kocharyan added that Azerbaijan obviously wants to refuse form the Minsk Group format for the simple reason that this format is a “straightjacket.” “It is not only professional, but is also well informed about the history of the conflict. Besides, the format includes three permanent members of the UN Security Council – Russia, France and the United States and all their statements are about one thing – peace,” the Deputy Foreign Minister added.

“This format has two important missions – to help the parties reach an agreement based on mutual concessions and not to allow the shaky ceasefire that has been in place for 20 years now to be abandoned,” he noted.

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