â€œArmenia will never be able to annex Azerbaijani landsâ€
- 26 February 2017
Armenia will never be able to annex Azerbaijani lands, Azerbaijani Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov told reporters in Baku Feb. 26, APA reported.
“Every time the international community calls for immediate steps to be taken to find a solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict or whenever an initiative arises to begin fulfilling some agreements reached during talks, Armenia resorts to provocative actions in a bid to escalate the situation along the line of contack, attacking Azerbaijani positions,” said Khalafov, commenting on the frontline provocation committed by Armenia on the night from Feb. 24 to Feb. 25.
Armenian army attempted to infiltrate through the Azerbaijani positions along the line of contact on the night from Feb. 24 to Feb. 25, said the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry on Feb. 25. The Armenian side attempted to seize favorable positions on the Khojavand-Fuzuli part of the frontline, said the ministry, adding heavy battles took place between Azerbaijani and Armenian troops.
The Armenian side’s large-scale provocation attempt was timely detected and resolutely prevented, said the ministry. Azerbaijani military units courageously prevented the attacks and the Armenian side was forced to retreat. Azerbaijan has casualties as a result of the battles, said the ministry.
The deputy minister noted that Armenia, through such provocations which are typical to its policy, is seeking to divert the attention of the international community from the conflict’s settlement.
“It won’t work because Azerbaijan now has international influence, has turned into the leading state in the South Caucasus region, and outdoes Armenia in both economic and military terms,” he said.
Armenia will never be able to annex Azerbaijani lands, Khalafov stressed. “This is an illusion. The sooner they give up this illusion, the sooner will stability prevail in this region,” he added.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict entered its modern phase when the Armenian SRR made territorial claims against the Azerbaijani SSR in 1988.
A fierce war broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. As a result of the war, Armenian armed forces occupied some 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory which includes Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent districts (Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli and Zangilan), and over a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced people.
The military operations finally came to an end when Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in Bishkek in 1994.
Dealing with the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the OSCE Minsk Group, which was created after the meeting of the CSCE (OSCE after the Budapest summit held in Dec.1994) Ministerial Council in Helsinki on 24 March 1992. The Group’s members include Azerbaijan, Armenia, Russia, the United States, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Belarus, Finland and Sweden.
Besides, the OSCE Minsk Group has a co-chairmanship institution, comprised of Russian, the US and French co-chairs, which began operating in 1996.
Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 of the UN Security Council, which were passed in short intervals in 1993, and other resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly, PACE, OSCE, OIC, and other organizations require Armenia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from Nagorno-Karabakh.