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Foreign Minister: Presence of Armenian troops on territory of Azerbaijan is a major destabilizing factor

Azerbaijan is ready to start work on a comprehensive peace agreement

Baku. 4 December. REPORT.AZ/ "Presence of Armenia’s armed forces on the occupied territories is major destabilizing factor with the potential for escalation at any time with unpredictable consequences". "Report informs, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said that at the meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council in Basel.

The minister stressed that "the protracted conflicts in the OSCE area are still, unfortunately, main threats to peace and security on the European continent. Strengthening the OSCE mediation capacity shall be accompanied by a firm resistance to selective interpretation of the founding principles of the Helsinki Final Act and against the attempts to consolidate results of violations of internationally recognized borders of OSCE participating States".

According to him, the ongoing occupation by Armenia the territories of Azerbaijan continues to pose a serious threat to international and regional peace and security and blatantly disregard with the international law and relevant four UN Security Council resolutions adopted in 1993.

"Unfortunately, after recent Armenia and Azerbaijan Presidential meetings in Sochi, Wales and last round of talks in Paris the armed forces of the Republic of Armenia held provocative large-scale military exercises at the occupied territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan. At all three meetings there were some positive indications that the progress at peace negotiations could be achieved. Such a provocative demonstration of force by Armenia absolutely do not correspond to the spirit of these talks, the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-chair countries’ leaders and undermine confidence building to reach political solution for the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied lands of Azerbaijan. The OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs had already expressed their concern about this large-scale Armenian military exercise in the occupied Azerbaijani territories, which included huge number of military personal and equipment. That kind of military exercises of Armenia must be assessed as attempts not only to hinder the mediators’ efforts to reach progress on the peace talks, but also to continue consolidate the occupation of the territories"- the Minister stated.

"The Government of Armenia must realize that reliance on the status-quo achieved as a result of military aggression by the use of force is a grave miscalculation. Occupation of the territory of Azerbaijan and ethnic cleansing of local population from homes of their origin does not represent a solution and will never produce a political outcome desired by Armenia. Withdrawal of Armenia’s troops can be a significant confidence building measure and will completely change the dynamic of peace process and open up immense opportunities for comprehensive and sustainable development of the South Caucasus region"- Mammadyarov said. "All of us must encourage Armenia seriously consider such important initiative"- he concluded.

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