Azerbaijan Claims Holding Secret Talks with Armenia on Karabakh

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Azerbaijan and Armenia are preparing compromise guidelines to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and to end strained Azeri-Armenian relations–reported the Azeri foreign ministry to the PrimeNews agency.

Diplomats reported that the preparation of documen’s and the consultations between the leaders of the two countries were strictly top secret.

The same sources indicated that in the near future–the sides will present a guideline for the status of Karabakh–which according to the same sources is allegedly based on the principles of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s Lisbon Summit–which guarantees Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and stipulates national security guarantees for the population of Karabakh.

The sources cited recent Russian and Armenian media reports–in which various approaches to the Karabakh status question have been discussed–including the establishment of an army–police force–coat of arms–flag and anthem. [The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic has had all the aforementioned attributes since declaring independence in 1991–Eds.]

Azeri presidential adviser Vafa Guluzade stated that all statehood attributes will be granted to Karabakh if its status conforms to the guidelines of the OSCE Lisbon Summit.

He added that if the Armenian side had agreed to the Lisbon principles–"today–they would have had their own coat of arms–anthem and all the attributes."

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