By Rashid Shirinov
Azerbaijani and Armenian Foreign Ministers Elmar Mammadyarov and Zohrab Mnatsakanyan will meet in Brussels on July 11, 2018, the Azerbaijani FM told reporters on July 9.
The meeting will be mediated by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs Igor Popov of Russia, Stephane Visconti of France and Andrew Schofer of the U.S. Andrzej Kasprzyk, the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, will also join the meeting.
Mammadyarov noted that the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs have already completed preparations for the upcoming meeting, which will discuss the negotiation process on the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Azerbaijan and Armenia fought a lengthy war that ended with signing of a fragile ceasefire in 1994. Since the war, Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan's territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding regions. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and over 1 million were displaced as a result of the large-scale hostilities.
While the OSCE Minsk Group acted as the only mediator in resolution of the conflict, the occupation of the territory of the sovereign state with its internationally recognized boundaries has been left out of due attention of the international community for years.
Until now, Armenia ignores four UN Security Council resolutions on immediate withdrawal from the occupied territory of Azerbaijan, thus keeping tension high in the region.
Azerbaijan has long ago stated it is ready to settle the conflict through direct negotiations with Armenia with mediation of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs. However, the Armenian side is constantly trying to make up reasons to avoid a constructive dialogue and preserve the unacceptable status quo in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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