ARF Conference Reaffirms Party Position Regarding Karabakh Negotiations

The ARF Bureau held a conference in Yerevan from May 11-12–to deal with the latest phase in the ongoing negotiations in the Karabakh conflict.

The conference reviewed the variants in the resolutions which have been proposed by the three co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group. It is presumed that these proposals will most likely be presented to the parties of the conflict in the next few weeks.

Conference participants included the ARF Bureau–the ARF Executive Council of Armenia–the Central Committee of Artsakh–representatives from various other ARF central committees–members of the ARF factions in the Armenian and Karabakh parliamen’s–and other invited members of the party.

The conference–putting faith in the negotiation process as a peaceful solution to the conflict at its present stage–affirmed the ARF position calling for the reunification of Artsakh with Armenia–which is part of the party program and is of strategic value. The assembly upheld the position of the ARF regarding the negotiation process–which was outlined in a statement released by the ARF Bureau on March 20–2001.

The conference also clarified the party’s positions on the variants proposed by the OSCE Group.

The conference affirmed that even at the first phase of the peace negotiations–the ARF stressed the necessity of fully involving Armenian political forces in the process. The security of not only Artsakh–but also the national security of Armenia and the Armenian people–is on the negotiating table. A unified position–unanimous adherence–and especially the strengthening of internal political stability must be displayed by the Armenian side–so that a victorious outcome can be realized in the negotiations.

Furthermore–the conference called on the Armenian president to consult with Armenian political forces in the examination of the various proposals that have been made–so that a single consolidated policy can be adopted. The conference also found it necessary the full participation of the Nagorno Karabakh leadership in the decisive phases of the negotiations.

The conference closed with the conclusion that the ARF supports a fair and peaceful resolution which could come about as a result of the ongoing negotiations–as long as the following principles are upheld in the peace process:

  • Securing the reunification of Artsakh with the Republic of Armenia or at least the recognition of Artsakh’s independent status
  • Guaranteeing the security and defense of Artsakh and Armenia,
  • Protecting the Armenian Republic’s sovereignty over its territory–as well as affirming Armenia’s strategic importance in the region.

The conference concluded that all those who expect the Armenian people to renounce the gains made in the Karabakh conflict simply because of the current social-economic conditions–are mistaken. The conference also reaffirmed the ARF’s commitment to the Armenian Cause and the resolution of the Karabakh conflict which must secure the gains achieved during the 13-year struggle.

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