Destructive rhetoric and provocative steps of Armenia's military-political leadership puts into question the Karabakh conflict negotiation process, mediated by the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Assistant to Azerbaijan’s President, Head of the Department of Foreign Policy Affairs of the Presidential Administration, Hikmat Hajiyev told Trend.
“It is known that the process of negotiations is based on a phased settlement. The statements of the Minsk Group co-chairing countries at various levels, as well as at the level of heads of state, repeatedly spoke about the plan for a phased settlement of the conflict and unacceptability of the status quo. Armenia, like always, in order to deceive its public, makes groundless claims. The resolution of the conflict based on a 'batch formula' is not a matter of discussion,” Hajiyev noted.
“The conflict should and will be resolved within the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, in accordance with the Constitution of Azerbaijan, the well-known resolutions of the United Nation Security Council (UNSC) and the Helsinki Final Act. The territorial integrity of Azerbaijan has never been and cannot be the subject of discussion. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia or any other person cannot make judgments about the territorial integrity and sovereign territories of Azerbaijan. As President Ilham Aliyev noted, the conflict should be resolved only within the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan," said the official.
He emphasized that the first and most important step in a phased settlement of the conflict is the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, and ensuring the right of Azerbaijani IDPs to safely return to their native lands.
“If the aggressive policy of Armenia continues, it is impossible to achieve progress in resolving the conflict. The occupation of part of the Azerbaijani territories by Armenia, like any occupation, is temporary. Armenia, as an occupying country, must finally understand this,” Hajiyev stressed.
“The territorial integrity of Azerbaijan is enshrined in the Constitution of Azerbaijan. The territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and its sovereignty are recognized and supported by the entire international community. In the context of the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the territorial integrity, sovereignty and inviolability of the borders of Azerbaijan are enshrined and reaffirmed in many international political and legal documents, including UN Security Council resolutions Nos. 822, 853, 874 and 884. The UNSC’s resolutions reaffirm Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and note that Nagorno-Karabakh is an integral part of Azerbaijan, strongly condemn the use of force against Azerbaijan and demand a complete, immediate and unconditional withdrawal of occupying forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan,” Hajiyev said.
“The position of the international community regarding the so-called "elections" organized by Armenia in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan has again shown that the situation that arose as a result of the occupation, military aggression and bloody ethnic cleansing, can never be kept up. These so-called "elections" were rejected by the OSCE, the EU, the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the Turkic Council and other international institutions, as well as individual states, who expressed support for the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan,” he said.
Hajiyev said that EU's Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) again clarified the EU’s position on supporting the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan in its statement on May 1.
Meanwhile, Armenia continues to voice contradictory statements. As we have already noted, the position of Azerbaijan regarding the settlement of the conflict is unambiguous, decisive and consistent, Hajiyev said.
“The political leadership of Armenia made claims about the participation of the illegal regime in the negotiations, and allegedly about a change of the negotiations’ format. The format of the negotiations cannot be changed, and as a state that has occupied part of the Azerbaijani territories, Armenia is a party to the conflict, bearing political and legal responsibility. As a result, Armenia was forced to continue to participate in the negotiations in the existing format,” Hajiyev stressed.
“The last "election" show, organized in Azerbaijan’s occupied territories, again showed that the proclaimed regime itself is nothing more than a criminal organization, and an integral part of the inter-clan war in Armenia. To link the illegal criminal regime created as a result of bloody ethnic cleansing with the right to self-determination is the real political hypocrisy,” said the official.
“Armenia, which carried out bloody ethnic cleansing of over a million Azerbaijanis, does not even have the moral right to talk about security. And the biggest source of danger for the region is exactly the aggressive policy of Armenia and the presence of Armenian troops in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan,” Hajiyev emphasized.
“In order to ensure the safety of the Azerbaijani population in the face of military provocations of the Armenian units, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces carried out counter-offensive measures in April 2016. As a result, the artificially created myth of the Armenian army vanished. Investigations by the Armenian army, as well as the dismissal of high-ranking generals after the April clashes, were recognition of defeat. Azerbaijan, on the basis of the UN Charter and its Constitution, reserves the right to ensure its territorial integrity and sovereignty at any time,” said the official.
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