By Sara Israfilbayova
Russia continues its mediation efforts on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova said at a briefing on August 23.
“Our mediation efforts are continuing. We are in contact with the parties in various formats,” Zakharova stressed.
The Russian side remains the most influential party in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Russia is capable of having a significant impact on the outcome of events in the Caucasus, and in particular, on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Russia has always played a very active role in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and along with the U.S. and France is a co-chair country of the OSCE Minsk Group, which spearheads the OSCE’s efforts to find a peaceful solution to the conflict.
Since 1992, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has become predominantly a problem of international importance. After Azerbaijan became a member of the Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), in accordance with the principles of this organization, the solution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was in the focus of public participants. Soon it was established the OSCE Minsk Group for settlement of the conflict.
Negotiations for a peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict are underway within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group. Azerbaijan insists on maintaining its territorial integrity, Armenia defends the interests of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic and rejects implementing four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding regions.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region 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. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations.
Sara Israfilbayova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Sara_999Is
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