If Baku wants real progress, it should negotiate directly with Stepanakert – Armenia’s Deputy FM

Armenian Deputy Foreign Minister Shavarsh Kocharyan says no progress has been registered in the process of settlement of the Karabakh conflict because of Azerbaijan’s destructive position.

“They want everything or nothing, everything or war. Therefore, speaking about progress is impossible,” Kocharyan told reporters at the National Assembly.

The Deputy FM stressed the need to respect the 1994 agreement on ceasefire, where Azerbaijan and Nagorno Karabakh were the main negotiating parties, and which Armenia joined at the last moment.

“The Co-Chairs are well aware that violation of this agreement means resumption of military actions,” Kocharyan said.

He noted that progress is impossible, when there is lack of trust between parties and one of the parties fails to respect previously signed agreements.

He noted that an atmosphere of trust should be established, but added that it is impossible as long as shooting continues.

Shavarsh Kocharyan stressed that Armenia can negotiate on its own behalf and can’t negotiate instead of Artsakh, because the pressing majority of issues on the negotiating table refers to Artsakh.

He noted that there are at least two directions, where Armenia cannot negotiate on behalf of Artsakh – Artsakh’s status and its territorial integrity.

Kocharyan said negotiations should be considered on two layers. He added that lack of negotiations increases the likelihood of resumption of military actions, therefore, when it comes to preventing the danger of resumption of war, Armenia should definitely participate. However, he said, Armenia can never undertake to talk on issues that should be decided by Artsakh authorities.

Shavarsh Kocharyan said the democratic processes taking place in the two Armenian states cannot but strengthen their position in the negotiations.

“Oil and gas are Azerbaijan’s trump card, while Armenia’s power is in the mental capacities, the creative potential of the people.

Shavarsh Kocharyan stated that “if Azerbaijan really wants progress in the talks, it will negotiate directly with Stepanakert,” and added that a vivid example of it was the 1994 ceasefire agreement.

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