Global thinkers call for efficient steps to intensify Karabakh peace process

By Nazrin Gadimova

At a time when the conflicts are shattered all around the world undermining overall security challenges, many experts urge that Nagorno-Karabakh conflict poses a serious threat to stability in the region.

The current stagnation in the peace process intrigued many interested parties to suggest ways of settlement, but they turn out inefficient to help resolving the long lasting conflict.

The Baku Global Forum, which is underway in Azerbaijan's capital with the participation of outstanding political figures to discuss various topics, including regional threats, also made a number of calls to intensify the Karabakh peace process.

Prominent participants of the event voiced their views on the conflict that evolved in 1988 as a result of Armenian aggression. The unfair war has entailed occupation of the Nagorno Karabakh and seven surrounding districts which make up 20 percent of the Azerbaijani territory.

Croatian former president Stefan Mesic said that the two-day forum pays special attention to the search of ways out of various conflicts.

Touching upon the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, Mesic said that this issue should be resolved peacefully.

"First of all, the international community needs to know how the Nagorno-Karabakh was occupied," he said.

Turkey’s former foreign minister Hikmet Cetin, in turn, believes that solution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict will be beneficial not only for Azerbaijan but also for the entire region.

"I believe that this conflict can be resolved by peaceful means,” he said. “Azerbaijan also seeks to resolve the conflict peacefully. I hope that the major world powers, the United Nations will make the necessary efforts to resolve the conflict.”

Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri, ISESCO head, admits that the international community should pay more attention to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, as well as to the withdrawal of belligerent Armenian forces from the Azerbaijani territories. He stressed that the world should pay attention to the return of refugees to their lands.

"The position of ISESCO remains unchanged -- we support justice and call for the immediate withdrawal of Armenian troops from Azerbaijani territories, as well as cessation of the occupation,” Altwaijri added.

Secretary General of the Club of Madrid, Carlos Westendorp, in turn, believes that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict must not be ‘frozen’.

"It must be resolved through dialogue and negotiations, as good neighborly relations between the countries are very important. It will be good both for the country [Azerbaijan] and for its neighbor [Armenia]. The neighbor must also admit that the occupation of territory through force is not allowed and there are always ways to solve the situation by negotiations,” Westendorp stressed.

Addressing the forum, Viktor Zubkov, Chair of the Russian Gazprom’s Board of Directors said that Russia could act as the main mediator in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

He also said that the resolution of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be carried out through coordinating with Russia, stressing high level of confidence existing between Azerbaijan and Russia.

Tensions between Russia and Turkey have no influence on the South Caucasus, Zubkov added.

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Nazrin Gadimova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @NazrinGadimova

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