Talks should continue despite Baku’s ‘non-constructive’ stance, Armenian FM says

The Foreign Ministers of Armenia and Russia Edward Nalbandian and Sergey Lavrov paid special attention to the Karabakh issue as they met in Yerevan today.

The top diplomats of the two countries referred to the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs’ efforts aimed at implementation of the decisions made during the summits in Vienna, St. Petersburg and Geneva.

Speaking to reporters following the meeting, Minister Nalbandian said “it would be good if Azerbaijan’s deeds met its words,” especially when it comes to the agreements on easing tensions.

He said “Armenia is ready to continue the negotiations on the basis of the three principles incorporated in the five statements made by the leaders of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairing countries with a view of finding a solution to the Karabakh conflict.” He added that Azerbaijan is doing its best to avoid referring to the five statements.

Edward Nalbandian said “Armenia has never retreated from agreements” and voiced hope that Azerbaijan would change its stance.

“Armenia is ready to work with the Co-Chairs towards an exceptionally peaceful resolution of the Karabakh conflict,” he stated.

He noted that no agreement between the Presidents of the two countries is expected in December.

Minister Nalbandian said “all principles of settlement are on the table. We have been long holding talks on the main principles of the Karabakh conflict settlement.” He added that negotiations should continue despite the ‘not very constructive position’ of Azerbaijan.

“There is no alternative to the negotiation process,” Armenia’s top diplomat stated.

Sergey Lavrov: Negotiations not expected to be completed any time soon 

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said, in turn, that all components of the conflict settlement are enshrined in numerous documents that have been deposited with the OSCE Secretary General. These include the proposals of the Co-Chairs, which are still on the table.”

Lavrov stressed that these components are compiled into a single package. “It’s hard to take two or three of them and say “let’s reach an agreement on the basis of these.”

Minister Lavrov welcomed the positive reaction of the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan to their recent meeting in Geneva. “It’s important for this positive attitude to help us move towards settlement.”

Russia’s top diplomat said he will be consulting with French and American counterparts to see “where we are in the settlement process,” with a view of intensifying efforts for creating favorable conditions to further the settlement process.

Minister Lavrov said he’s not very optimistic about perspectives, considering that the “issue is a complex one.”

“The experience of negotiations shows they will not be completed any time soon,” Lavrov stated.

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