New French OSCE MG co-chair assumes office - EXCLUSIVE

New French OSCE MG co-chair assumes office - <span style="color: red;">EXCLUSIVE
# 03 November 2016 12:04 (UTC +04:00)

Baku. Malahat Najafova – APA. Ambassador Stefan Visconti has already started to work in his new functions as the French co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, the Foreign Ministry of France told APA on Thursday.

Ambassador Visconti should take part in the annual OSCE ministerial meeting in Hamburg, early December, said the Foreign Ministry.

Minsk Group co-chairs are scheduled to hold meetings with Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers as part of the OSCE ministerial meeting.

The co-chairs are also planning to arrange a meeting between Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign minister to discuss the issue of organizing a meeting of the two countries’ presidents.

Visconti succeeded Pierre Andrieu.

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.

Nagorno Garabagh