German Foreign Minister Calls for Karabakh Peace

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle meets with President Sarkisian

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)—The status quo in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is not sustainable and Armenia should be particularly interested in its peaceful resolution, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said during a visit to Yerevan on Thursday.

Westerwelle met with President Serzh Sarkisian and Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian on the final leg of his tour of the three South Caucasus states. They discussed bilateral ties, the Karabakh dispute and developments in the broader region.

“From our perspective, the status quo in the Karabakh conflict zone cannot be long-lasting,” Westerwelle told a joint news conference with Nalbandian. “And benefits anticipated from a peaceful settlement will be great for all parties, especially Armenia. Therefore, a compromise solution to the conflict should be pursued within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group.”

Top officials from the United States, Russia and France, which co-chair the Minsk Group, have made similar statements in recent months. In a joint statement last December, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and a top French official described the Karabakh status quo as “unacceptable.”

Westerwelle indicated Germany’s support for the basic principles of Karabakh peace proposed by the three mediating powers. He said the conflict should be resolved on the basis of “a balance between the principles of territorial integrity and people’s self-determination.”

Nalbandian blamed Azerbaijan for the lack of decisive progress in the long-running peace talks. In particular, he accused Baku of backtracking on an agreement to jointly investigate ceasefire violations in the conflict zone which he said was brokered by the mediators last year. “We agree on something but Azerbaijan then backpedals,” Nalbandian said.

Yerevan also claims that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev scuttled a framework peace accord during a June 2011 summit with Sarkisian that was organized by Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev. It says Aliyev unexpectedly demanded a dozen changes in the latest version of the basic principles put forward by the Minsk Group co-chairs.

Westerwelle and Nalbandian also praised the current state of political and economic ties between their nations. Westerwelle reaffirmed his country’s support for Armenia’s integration into the European Union though the bloc’s Eastern Partnership program.

Germany is one of Armenia’s leading trading partners and its number one export market in the EU. According to Armenian government data, the total volume of German-Armenian trade rose by almost 18 percent to $404 million last year, accounting for 7.4 percent of the South Caucasus state’s overall external commerce.

Germany is Armenia’s second-largest foreign donor after the United States, having allocated at least 220 million euros ($290 million) in loans and grants since 1995. It has also been the single largest contributor to the EU’s separate multimillion-dollar assistance to Yerevan.

“I think our potential [for economic cooperation] is much greater,” said Nalbandian. “With joint efforts we can do more.”

“We are also grateful to Germany for its assistance provided to Armenia since independence,” added the minister.

In Westerwelle’s words, Berlin is especially interested in helping to strengthen the rule of law in Armenia with various assistance programs. That is essential for the country’s sustainable economic development, he said.

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10 Comments

  1. Albert Nercessian said:

    Germans will screw the Armenians again as they have done many times. This settlement will only help Azerbajian because they want oil pipelines to be built through the NKR and Armenia to Turkey. Don’t trust these sneaky Nazis. Don’t forget that bribes of the German government led to the defeat of the lawsuit filed by Armenian Genocide victims families against the Germany insurance companies . I hope the Russian-Armenians will stop buying Mercedes Benz and BMW cars as a protest against the Germans .Each car sale helps the German economy and we need to punish the Germans.

  2. Albert Nercessian said:

    The blind Germans have allowed the Turks to destroy their country and now they are still kissing up to the Turks and Azeris for cheap oil Shame on them.

  3. John Markarian said:

    Why doesn’t the German government act in an honorable and moral way by paying the monies due from the German life insurance claims that the families of the Armenian genocide victims have been suing for. Why is Germany acting in such an ugly way. Armenians are owned the same insurance settlements as the Jewish victims of the Holocaust got.

  4. levon sanosyan said:

    What status quo? Artsakh is free and independent, final. Every one go and mind your businesses if you have any. Consider Artsakh is not on the map of the world, go and stir up your own home, you have nothing to do in Artsakh anymore.

  5. facts said:

    German FM shouldn’t have tied to repeat in Yerevan what the regime in Baku had side to him, ‎this is: “status quo in the Karabakh conflict zone cannot be long-lasting” without mentioning ‎and ‎ condemning ‎ the unconstructive stand and Nazi like anti Armenian policy of the ruling ‎regime in Baku!‎

    Stepanakert and Yerevan should remaind Germany agian and again about reunification of East and West Germany (first international border changes after WWiI in europe) and above all about Saarland (German pronunciation: ‎‎[ˈzaːɐlant]; French: Sarre, IPA: [saʁ]) which was allowed to join federal Germany in 1957!‎

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saarland

  6. sevag ajemian said:

    never trust germans they were ally of turks they always helping the turkish economy mercedes opens their factories in Turkey not in armenia they gain money. we ? nothing

  7. John Markarian said:

    A win-win situation would be for Russia to give Armenia land in Southeastern Dagastan in the border area between Dagastan and Chechnya. This would prevent the Chechan and Dagastani terrorists from moving freely because this northern republic of Armenia would seal the border between Chechyna and the rest of Dagestan..The benefit for Armenia would be another base to strike at Azerbajian from the North in case of an attack on Nagorno-Karabagh. Russia and Armenia would both be winners in this.This area is a real troublespot for Russia and Armenia could really help Russia

  8. Satenik said:

    Stop scheming things for Artsakh. Artsakh is independent and will do far better without the interference of other nations ,particularly those that have self serving interests and links to Turkey and Azerbaijan.

  9. Arman said:

    Let Germany recognize the Armenian Genocide, especially so because Germany has responsibility in this great crime of crimes.

  10. kavkaz emirati said:

    john markarian just dream on. million radical kavkaz people and tatar always ready to kill armenians and georgian folks in moscow you cant see any armenian or georgian where is kavkaz and tatar population lives many christian who put to cross nackle killed in moscow by us what happened ? nothing police cant make anything against us. we make alot of child and occupy the russian population where is mostly reside look russians population in north Caucasia region and search Caucasian muslim migration population to moscow st.petersburg krasnodar vladivostok murmansk novosibirsk ulyanovsk stavropol sochi since 1995 to 2011 their numbers especially this our strategy we dont have nothing against the russian gavornment and another muslim countries we open mosque madrasa islamic schools and last years dagestan moscow kazan islamic universities opened in moscow st.petersburg krasnodar vladivostok murmansk novosibirsk ulyanovsk stavropol sochi by their economic supports

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