All issues related to Nagorno-Karabakh remain closed within a very limited circle of people, which is understandable but does not contribute to the preparation of societies to accept any compromise solutions, said OSCE PA Special Representative on the South Caucasus Kristian Vigenin.
He made the remarks when presenting his final report at the winter session of the OSCE PA in Vienna on Feb. 22 before his resignation, APA reports.
“Following two years of intensive work, I have achieved visibility for the OSCE PA in the South Caucasus and also more information sharing on the region within the OSCE PA. However, no breakthrough was possible on any important issue. We have to admit also that no other body or institution has achieved anything significant in the region in the past two years,” Vigenin said.
He went on to say: “It is true that at least a relative peace was maintained. But I have the impression that especially on Nagorno-Karabakh the international community has switched its ambition from achieving a comprehensive solution and long lasting peace to simply avoiding war. That is not sustainable and has to be reversed. The OSCE PA can play a role but only when conditions for that are created, especially in the capitals of the countries concerned.”
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.