Azerbaijan specifies conditions for increasing number of OSCE observers on contact line of troops
- 01 February 2018
Certain conditions must be fulfilled before increasing the number of OSCE observers on the contact line of Azerbaijani and Armenian troops, Ziyafat Asgarov, Azerbaijani Parliament’s First Deputy Speaker and chairman of the parliamentary Committee on defense, security and anti-corruption, told APA.
He noted that increasing the number of OSCE observers is the primary condition for putting an end to the killing of Azerbaijani civilians residing close to the front line.
“Moreover, although a technical procedure, increasing the number of observers, I think this issue can only be discussed if aimed at finding a substantive solution to the Azerbaijan-Armenia Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” said Asgarov.
“But at the same time, I think that both the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs and Armenia should undertake to ensure that Yerevan does not pursue an insidious goal to maintain the status quo in this matter. Because each time, when a concrete result on the conflict resolution is reached, Armenia avoids negotiations and maintains the status quo. Although I’m convinced that Armenia still thinks so. Therefore, I think that they should take the obligation not to preserve the status quo in this matter. I think that only in this case it is worth discussing this issue,” 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 December 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.