Armenian, Azeri Foreign Ministers Meet in Kiev

Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian (left) and Azeri Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov met in Kiev, Ukraine

KIEV (ArmRadio)—The meeting of Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyariv and the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, Igor Popov, Jacques Faure, James Warlick and Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk took place in Ukraine’s capital Kiev on December 4.

After the face-to-face meeting the Foreign Ministers were joined by the Minsk Group Co-Chairs and the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office.

The mediators and the Foreign Ministers continued the discussions to give a new impetus to the negotiations aimed at reaching a peaceful solution, exchanged views on the possible steps aimed at easing the tension in the conflict zone.

The Ministers and the Co-Chairs agreed to continue the discussions on the issue in the coming weeks. The Co-Chairs spoke about their intention to visit the region in the near future.

Emphasizing the importance of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairmanship – as a framework for the settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh issue – the Foreign Ministers thanked the Co-Chairs for the efforts towards continuation of the peace process.

On the occasion of the OSCE Ministerial Council Meeting in Kiev, the Heads of Delegation of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chair countries (Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation Sergei Lavrov, Minister for European Affairs of France Thierry Repentin, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland) and the Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan Elmar Mammadyarov and Foreign Minister of Armenia Edward Nalbandian agreed to continue working together on a just and peaceful resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on the basis of what has been already achieved.

The Co-Chair Heads of Delegation welcomed the recent resumption of high-level dialogue between the Presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia, and expressed their hope that upcoming meetings will advance the peace process.  They encouraged the sides to consider measures that would reduce tensions in the region.

The Foreign Ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia agreed to meet again in early 2014 under the auspices of the Minsk Group Co-Chairs, in order to facilitate further talks at the highest level.  The Ministers noted that the people of the region expect and deserve progress in settlement of the conflict that has endured far too long, and expressed their appreciation for the mediation role of the Co-Chair countries.

Moscow expects the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) to approve Russia’s initiative on basic principles of conflict prevention and crisis settlement, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at the OSCE ministerial session in Kiev.

“There are still a number of regional problems over the OSCE area,” Lavrov said.

“We support the settlement of the Transnistrian conflict in the 5+2 format. Together with the other co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (France and US) we continue the efforts to bring the positions of the parties to the Nagorno Karabakh conflict closer,” the Russian Foreign Minister said, ITAR-TASS reports.

“I would like once again to draw your attention to the initiative Russia proposed in 2009 on developing basic principles of conflict prevention and crisis settlement,” Lavrov said , adding that its adoption would be an important contribution in that direction.

“Our document remains on the negotiating table,” he said.

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