No military solution to the Karabakh conflict, Sweden’s Foreign Minister says





Sweden sees the settlement of the Karabakh conflict through peace talks under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, Sweden’s Foreign Minister Margot Wallström said at a joint press conference with Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian.

“This visit provided an opportunity to better understand how you see the resolution of the Karabakh conflict. There is no military solution to the issue. We should do the utmost to prevent escalation,” Mrs. Wallström told reporters in Yerevan.

The Armenian FM said, in turn, that “Azerbaijan believes it can blackmail the Co-Chairs with primitive, provocative statements.”

“It’s strange that they do not learn lessons, because their statements produce the opposite effect. The opinion of the international community is getting more targeted year by year,” he said.

The Armenian Foreign Minister is hopeful Azerbaijan will finally come to understand that this stance gives it no privilege. As for Armenia, it will continue to work jointly with the Minsk Group with a view of reaching an exceptionally peaceful resolution to the Karabakh conflict, since there is no alternative to peace talks.”

Responding to Azerbaijani claims that Armenia wants to keep the status quo, Minister Nalbandian said: “Armenia and the Co-Chairs are interested in changing the status quo. It’s Azerbaijan ignoring the calls of the OSCE Minsk Group to reinstate the commitment to solve the issue in a peaceful way through negotiations. It’s Azerbaijan refusing to create a mechanism of investigation of border incidents. Baku insists that it [the mechanism] will contribute to the maintenance of the status quo.”

At a meeting in Yerevan the Foreign Ministers of Armenia and Sweden discussed the opportunities of development of trade and economic, educational and cultural ties, cooperation in the field of healthcare.

The parties agreed upon the improvement of the legal framework and investment promotion. They attached importance to the Convention between the Government of the Republic of Armenia and the Government of the Kingdom of Sweden for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital signed between the two countries.

The sides agreed to continue the high-level political dialogue, hold consultations between two Ministries of Foreign Affairs on a regular basis to further deepen the cooperation. They highlighted the IT sector as an important field of cooperation.

Edward Nalbandian and Margot Wallström touched upon Armenia-EU relations, stressing the importance of negotiations on a new Armenia-EU framework agreement.

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