Moscow. Farid Akbarov – APA. An initiative of creating incident investigation mechanisms in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone belongs to Russia, said Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for Russia’s Foreign Ministry.
She made the remarks at a press briefing in Moscow Nov. 17, APA’s Moscow correspondent reported.
Zakharova noted that such an initiative was put forward by Moscow during the tripartite meeting of Russian, Azerbaijani and Armenians presidents in Sochi in 2011.
“The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group and an assistant of the personal representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office jointly developed a draft of these mechanisms. Then again, these mechanisms were developed by the OSCE experts,” the spokespersons said, adding. “At the Vienna summit, the parties agreed on the completion of this work in the short term. However, unfortunately, no agreement was reached on this matter during the St. Petersburg summit of Russian, Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents in June this year.”
At the St. Petersburg summit, the Azerbaijani side insisted on the fact that there is no need to create incident investigation mechanism in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, said Zakharova.
“At that time the situation in the conflict zone was stable. Thus, the issue of incident investigation mechanism has not been reflected in the statement jointly adopted on the results of the meeting,” noted Zakharova, adding that Moscow still considers this issue relevant.
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.