Time to start serious work on Karabakh conflict settlement – Azerbaijani FM
The time has come to start serious work on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Azerbaijan's Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said June 30.
He made the remarks at a briefing following the talks with OSCE chairperson, foreign minister of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
"We discussed the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict," Mammadyarov said. "Steinmeier informed me about Armenia's position on the issue."
Azerbaijan unambiguously demands withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from its occupied territories, Mammadyarov said, adding that the time has come to change the status quo, the preservation of which is unacceptable.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.