Sarkisian Publicly Refutes Arzoumanian Statemen’s

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–Defense Minister Vazgen Sarkisian told Azg that he disagrees with a statement by Foreign Minister Alexander Arzoumanian that the IMF and other international institutions "will create problems" for Armenia unless it makes concessions in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. "Moreover–that is not the position of the government," claims Sarkisian.

Meanwhile–First Deputy Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian–in an interview with Hayastani Hanrapetutiun said "the OSCE approaches [on resolving the conflict] are not favorable to us" and Azerbaijan will try to get the upcoming OSCE meeting in Copenhagen to uphold "the Lisbon principles."

In his words–the meeting’s outcome will depend on the position of the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group. "I think they understand that the OSCE’s Lisbon statement–which has resulted in a year-long interruption of the negotiations–was a serious blow to the peace process." According to Oskanian–in order for the negotiations to resume "the consequences of Lisbon should be somehow alleviated." As for the remarks on Karabakh by Levon Ter-Petrosyan–they are "not defeatist."This does not mean we back down from our principal position," implying that Ter-Petrosyan’s commen’s were a compromise in principle for the Armenian side.

Also–Oskanian believes that the co-chairs’ visit to the region in early December will predetermine "the results of Copenhagen." He maintained that there is no serious disagreement between Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh–and that the two governmen’s will work out a "joint approach" for the Copenhagen meeting. This statement comes a week after Karabakh leader Arkady Ghoukassian confimred a serious discord between his government and the Armenian authorities.

Golos Armenii compared the Nov. 25 statement on Nagorno-Karabakh by the UN General Assembly with a "bomb explosion," arguing that "the results of the Copengahen meeting have thus been predetermined."

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