Oskanian Hopes for Progress in Planned Kocharian Aliyev Meeting

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian said on Friday he hopes that the planned meeting later this month between the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan will result in progress over the settlement of their decade-long dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh.

Oskanian told RFE/RL that the meeting–which is expected to take place August 19 on the sidelines of an unofficial CIS summit in Crimea–may produce "some movement" in the peace process. But he cautioned that it is still too early to expect a breakthrough from the talks.

Presidents Robert Kocharian of Armenia and Haydar Aliyev of Azerbaijan have held a series of face-to-face meetings over the past year–raising hopes for a peace settlement that is seen as vital for stability in the South Caucasus. However–no peace deals have been agreed upon so far.

The Minsk Group of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe–co-chaired by Russia–the United States and France–is currently working on new peace proposals.

It is not clear yet when they will be submitted to the conflicting parties.

Oskanian said Kocharian and Aliyev will discuss no concrete peace plans and will instead continue their search for mutually acceptable "general principles" of the Karabakh settlement.

Another meeting reportedly is still ebing planned between the two leaders in October in New York.

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