Minsk Group Co-Chairs call for additional steps to reduce tensions

The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Igor Popov of the Russian Federation, Stephane Visconti of France, and Andrew Schofer of the United States of America), together with the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk, met with President Ilham Aliyev in Baku on 7 February and President Serzh Sargsyan in Yerevan on 9 February. In both capitals, they also held consultations with the respective Foreign Ministers.  The Co-Chairs also traveled to Nagorno-Karabakh on 9-11 February to meet with de facto authorities and visited specific locations in the Zangelan, Kubatly, Agdam, Lachin, and Kelbajar districts.

The Co-Chairs underscored the importance of fulfilling, in good faith, all commitments undertaken during the October 2017 Summit in Geneva and at previous summits, in particular, Vienna and St. Petersburg.

The Co-Chairs expressed deep concern over the recent loss of life on the Line of Contact. The Co-Chairs call upon the Sides to take additional steps to reduce tensions, as agreed in Geneva, and to respect the ceasefire. The Co-Chairs also call upon the Sides to refrain from inflammatory statements and provocative actions.

The Co-Chairs reiterate their commitment to helping the Sides find a peaceful solution to the conflict based on the core principles of the Helsinki Act, including the non-use of force, territorial integrity, and the equal rights and self-determination of peoples.

The Co-Chairs welcomed the parties’ expressed intention to continue intensive negotiations, taking into account the current electoral period.

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