Azerbaijani President: Significant part of our territory is under occupation today

Presidents of OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs countries - Russia, USA and France repeatedly stated that the status quo is unacceptable

Baku. 3 December. REPORT.AZ/ "Unfortunately, we cannot speak about the success in the negotiation process. The reason is quite simple and clear. We have such an idea accepted in the society that Armenia does not want peace and  this conflict to be solved. They want to keep everything as it exists. In other words, Armenia wants to maintain the status quo. Though the presidents of OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs countries - Russia, USA and France repeatedly stated that the status quo is unacceptable, it should be changed."

Report informs, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said it in his interview with Russian-wide State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company "Rossiya-24" information channel.

The President stressed that the change of the status quo means the liberation of the occupied Azerbaijani territories: "Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict differs from all other conflicts in post-Soviet countries since the UN Security Council resolutions-even four resolutions are available for its solution. These documents require an immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian forces from occupied territories. For over 20 years, these resolutions are not fulfilled.

Armenia is simply ignores these resolutions. Since there is no mechanism for the implementation of these resolutions. These resolutions are the basis of a settlement, as the other option is simply not possible. Nagorno-Karabakh is historical territory of Azerbaijan. Nagorno-Karabakh is called "Nagorno" because there also exists Aran Karabakh. Karabakh is an ancient land of Azerbaijan. Today, a part of Karabakh is under the occupation. Not only the territories within the borders of the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region, but also the lands outside the autonomous area where the Armenians did not live were occupied. We have been subjected to ethnic cleansing and a significant part of our territory is under the occupation today.

In other words, there is a legal framework for the settlement of the issue. This is the resolutions of the UN Security Council . There is a historical basis. Because, the "Karabakh" is the word of Azerbaijani origin and the historians and those who deal with this topic are aware of the history of this country. However, Armenian side with their actions tries to disrupt the negotiations by all means.

I should say that the negotiation process was more intensive this year in comparison with previous years. In addition, the leaders of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs countries took an active part in the negotiation process, as it was never observed before. In August, President Putin held a meeting with Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents in Sochi. US Secretary of State Kerry held a similar meeting with us in September and also, French President Francois Hollande invited the presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia to the meeting in Paris at the end of October. So, we had both bilateral and trilateral discussions.

Besides the resolution of the conflict and negotiation process, the issues of strengthening confidence building measures, the reduction of incidents on the contact line were discussed. Both sides - both Armenian and Azerbaijani side evaluated the Paris meeting and issued it in their statements. However, approximately two weeks later, Armenia began to hold the so-called military exercises in the occupied part of our territory. Moreover, they held the exercises in the territory of Azerbaijani Aghdam region- directly on the contact line, not in Armenia or even former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast.

According to Armenia, 47 thousand soldiers and thousands of types of techniques took part there. The question is: what is the necessity of committing acts of provocation immediately after the positive meeting in Paris?! Moreover, Azerbaijan demonstrated the restraint and patience and did not give any reaction within a few days of the exercises. Apparently, the Armenian side was not satisfied with it and attempted to attack with Mi-24 combat helicopters to our positions. While the helicopters attacking to the positions of our troops, Azerbaijani army had to shoot down one of them. It was the provocation committed deliberately that prompted us to respond in order to use it as an excuse to break the negotiation process again.

In my opinion, the OSCE Minsk Group should have commented on the Armenians' provocation seriously and condemned their actions. However, it did not happen, as the result, they get away with it. Therefore, the prospects of regulation will depend on several factors in 2015 and one of these factors is that the mediators should convince the Armenian side that the settlement of the conflict is also in their favor." 

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