“As a co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, the United States will continue to work closely with the sides to achieve a lasting, negotiated settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict based on the principles of international law, the UN Charter, and the Helsinki Final Act,” Ambassador Daniel B. Baer, U.S Representative to the OSCE, said is a statement.
“Regretfully, violence along the line of contact and the Armenia-Azerbaijan state border has escalated over the past several months. The United States reiterates the concerns of the Minsk Group Co-Chairs and condemns the use of mortars and other heavy weaponry that has caused civilian casualties. We echo the Co-Chairs’ appeals to the sides to take immediate steps to reduce tensions and protect lives,” he said.
“The status quo is neither acceptable nor sustainable, and we remind the sides that there can be no military solution to the conflict. The United States strongly supports the Co-Chairs’ efforts to facilitate an intensified dialogue between the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan and to establish structured negotiations in order to make progress towards a peaceful settlement,” Amb. Baer said.
The Ambassador also urged the Azerbaijani government to respect and uphold the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all its citizens, consistent with its international commitments and obligations. This is not separate from, but indeed a central component of, achieving a comprehensive and sustainable security for Azerbaijan and the region.
He noted that the United States regrets the closure of the OSCE Office in Baku and hope that it is temporary because such a presence could contribute to this work, along with the work in other dimensions including the rule of law, human rights and countering transnational threats.