Oskanian Addresses Kosovo Conflict

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–"As a country which has a similar problem of self-determination in the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute and proceeding from its historical past–Armenia has always advocated the right of nations to self-determination," Armenia’s Foreign Minister Vardan Oskanian said speaking on national television on March 26.

According to Oskanian–Armenia is simply convinced that the violent suppression of the struggle for self-determination will not lead to a solution to this problem or peace and stability in this region.

"Our attitude towards Kosovo’s self-determination is positive," Oskanian declared. But–on the other hand–Armenia is increasingly concerned over the application of force by NATO against one of the parties so as to make it comply with one or another solution. "This is a rather serious and dangerous precedent–especially now that a new world order is being formed–and similar precedents may entail negative consequences in the future," said Oskanian.

Oskanian emphasized that Armenia is concerned over the fact that NATO had made a decision to bomb Yugoslavia without coordinating it with the UN Security Council–which "is also a dangerous precedent." Quoting the statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia’spread on March 25–Oskanian again expressed a hope that the sides would in the long run return to talks to try to settle the problem by peaceful means.

Addressing the issue of different approaches by the international community to the problems of Kosovo and Nagorno Karabakh–Oskanian said that the principal difference is in the geographical position: Kosovo is situated in the center of Europe and all related developmen’s may pose serious danger to other countries of Europe–especially for the European Union–which–in turn–may jeopardize US interests in general. "That is why Europe and the world community focus their attention on these events–while no such interests was shown in Karabakh in 1992," the foreign minister concluded.

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