Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has said Baku will suppress the attempts of the OSCE Minsk Group to deal with the Karabakh issue, Interfax reports.
Aliyev said he has an idea of ”what the group should do and what it should not.” “They should not deal with the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, because it is resolved,” he said in an interview with Azerbaijani TV channels.
The President added that, according to his information, there is no unity among the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs. “My judgments prove this. Relations between these countries have become especially tense lately, and they have diverged views on the past conflict and the current situation. I do not think they can come to an agreement.”
Aliyev stated that first of all, it is necessary to determine to what extent the co-chairmanship in the Minsk Group today corresponds to the realities of the time, whether there is a need to change the co-chairs.
“Many do not even know what kind of group it is. The sequence should be like this. Firstly, it is necessary to clarify the viability of this group. Secondly, they should present an agenda of what they plan to do, and the agenda should be agreed between themselves. Then the Azerbaijani and Armenian sides should express their attitude to this. These first two points are not yet available. Therefore, in principle, it makes no sense to talk about this topic,” Aliyev stated.
The Minsk Group co-chairing countries have stated on many occasions that they are united in the commitment to mediating a peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
In a joint statement dated December 7, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov, and French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian encouraged the sides to welcome the Co-Chairs to the region as soon as possible to allow them to assess the situation on the ground first-hand and to reach agreement on an agenda for future engagements.
They also reiterated their strong support for the continuing work of the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chair in Office (PRCiO) in the region and encourage the sides to cooperate fully with his efforts.
The Co-Chair countries of the OSCE Minsk Group reaffirmed their commitment to working with the sides to find comprehensive solutions to all remaining issues related to or resulting from the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in accordance with their mandate in order to promote a secure, stable, prosperous and peaceful future for the South Caucasus region.