By Rashid Shirinov
The territorial integrity of Azerbaijan was once again supported in the final communique of the NATO Brussels Summit, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said in a statement on July 12.
It notes that during his working visit to Brussels on July 10-12, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev attended the North Atlantic Council meeting on the NATO Resolute Support Mission with the participation of potential operational partners and heads of state and government of partner countries contributing to the NATO operation in Afghanistan.
In the final communique, NATO member states once again reiterated their commitment to support the territorial integrity, independence and sovereignty of Azerbaijan as well as the resolution of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict based on these principles.
“Since 2006, NATO member states have always supported the territorial integrity, independence and sovereignty of Azerbaijan in the summit meeting communiques,” the Foreign Ministry noted.
It also stated that Azerbaijan commends the reiterated support by EU and NATO member states in the EU-Azerbaijan Partnership Priorities Document and the NATO Brussels Summit Communique respectively for the territorial integrity, sovereignty and inviolability of the borders of Azerbaijan.
“In accordance with the norms and principles of international law and the Helsinki Final Act, respect and support for the sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of the borders of states form the basis of international relations and are an important factor for sustainable peace and security,” the statement reads.
The territorial integrity of Azerbaijan was violated because of the military aggression by Armenia, which occupied Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding regions from Azerbaijan in a war that followed the Soviet breakup in 1991. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and nearly 1 million were displaced as a result of the war.
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 to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict have produced no tangible results so far due to Armenia's unconstructive position on the issue.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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