By Akbar Mammadov
Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Leyla Abdullayeva has said that Baku and the mediators in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict will not allow Armenia to protract the negotiation process.
“Neither Azerbaijan nor the international community will allow Armenia to protract the negotiation process on the settlement of the conflict with artificial attempts, fraud and lies,” Abdullayeva told AZTV channel on May 19.
Armenia must clearly understand that the negotiation process, in which Armenia and Azerbaijan have been involved for many years, involves international mediators, and the main purpose of this negotiation process is to eliminate the consequences of the conflict, the ministry spokesperson said.
“The elimination of the occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding regions of Azerbaijan, including Lachyn, the withdrawal of the occupying forces from these territories and the restoration of the rights of our displaced people, that is, their return to their homes, their return to their property. This is the purpose of the negotiations. Armenia’s participation in negotiations is characterized by this,” Leyla Abdullayeva stressed.
Abdullayeva stressed that Azerbaijan's internationally recognized territorial integrity has never been and cannot be the subject of discussion.
“This has always been voiced by the head of our state many times and on the highest platforms”, she added.
“The sooner Armenia realizes this, the more progress we can make in resolving the conflict,” she noted.
Azerbaijan and Armenia are locked in a conflict over Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh breakaway region, which along with seven adjacent regions was occupied by Armenian forces in a war in the early 1990s. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and around one million were displaced as a result of the large-scale hostilities.
The OSCE Minsk Group co-chaired by the United States, Russia and France has been mediating the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict since the signing of the volatile cease-fire agreement in 1994. The Minsk Group’s efforts have resulted in no progress and to this date, Armenia has failed to abide by the UN Security Council resolutions (822, 853, 874 and 884) that demand the withdrawal of Armenian military forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.
Akbar Mammadov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AkbarMammadov97
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