By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Armenia demonstrates counter-productive and destructive policy with regard to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict’s settlement, Azerbaijani presidential aide, Head of Foreign Policy Affairs Department of the Presidential Administration Hikmat Hajiyev said in an interview with EURACTIV on January 21.
Hajiyev emphasized that Baku can’t see any particular progress with regard to the conflict resolution. He reiterated President Aliyev’s recent statement that 2019 was a lost year for the negotiating process on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
"On the contrary, we have seen counter-productive, destructive policy by Armenia. Armenian side tries to change the format of the negotiation process. Nevertheless, we have already established the format of the negotiation process," Hajiyev stated.
He recalled that Armenia and Azerbaijan are conflicting parties and OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs are mediators.
"Armenian side has at a very high level claimed ‘new territories, new wars’, ‘no inch of territory back’ and finally, Armenian Prime Minister in occupied Khankendi city of Azerbaijan said that ‘Nagorno-Karabakh is Armenia’. It is a pure annexation of the territory of a sovereign state at the level of leadership of one country against other country. It is totally unacceptable. It was an element of not just undermining, but destroying the entire negotiation process." he stressed.
Touching upon EU’s approach to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict’s settlement, Hajiyev said Azerbaijan has taken a positive note about the EU’s principled and firm position with regard to territorial integrity, sovereignty and inviolability of internationally recognized borders of Azerbaijan.
Particularly, he added, it has been reaffirmed in the partnership priorities document that has been signed between Azerbaijan and the EU.
"We also see continuation of this policy, especially, in the implementation of the Common foreign policy and security document of the EU that has been endorsed in the European Parliament. It is a bounding principle that says that EU supports territorial integrity of all Eastern Partnership countries. For us it is critically important and we appreciate that position," he underlined.
Hajiyev considers these core fundamental principles that are deriving from the Helsinki Final Act and international law should in non-selective manner be applied to all countries and with respect to all Eastern Partnership countries.
"We would also like to see further continuation of this policy and see it also reflected in EU positions," he concluded.
Nagorno-Karabakh is Azerbaijan’s breakaway region that along with seven surrounding regions was occupied by Armenian armed forces during the war in the early 1990s that killed hundreds of thousands of people. Around one million Azerbaijanis were displaced as a result of the occupation.
Large-scale hostilities ended with a Russia-brokered ceasefire in 1994 but Armenia continued the occupation in defiance of four UN Security Council resolutions calling for immediate and unconditional withdrawal. Unfortunately, peace talks mediated by Russia, France and the U.S. within the OSCE Minsk Group have produced no tangible results so far due to Armenia's unconstructive position on the issue.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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