Baku. Ramiz Mikayiloglu – APA. If a referendum takes place in Nagorno-Karabakh, the majority of the population will choose to stay within Azerbaijan, said head of the Intra-national Liberation Movement Organization Vahan Martirosyan, who asked for political asylum in Azerbaijan.
He made the remarks at the panel session on "Defining the final legal status of Nagorno-Karabakh within Azerbaijan's territorial integrity", organized in Baku Nov. 8 in the framework of the conference titled “Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict: main obstacles and prospects of the settlement. View from Armenia and Azerbaijan”.
According to him, the population of Nagorno-Karabakh was divided into two groups – elite and supporters of the president of the puppet regime in Nagorno-Karabakh.
He stressed that the majority of the population in Nagorno-Karabakh suffers from miserable living conditions.
Addressing the event, Armenian writer, publicist and public figure Vahe Avetyan stated that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be resolved within Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and Armenia in this process should act as a peacemaker.
Azerbaijan can play a positive role in the normalization of Turkey-Armenia ties, 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.