Tranquil Scottish Village Hosts Karabagh Talks

SCOTLAND (Combined Sources)–As a part of the South Caucasus Parliamentary Initiative–an attempt at inter-republic dialogue–begun more than two years ago by the London based non-governmental organization Links–took place over the weekend in the small town of Craigellachie–Scotland that boasts a population of 400.

Members of Armenian and Azerbaijani parliamentary delegations and representatives of Links specifically discussed issues concerning the Mountainous Karabagh conflict.

Heading the Armenian delegation–deputy speaker of Armenian parliament Tigran Torosian said on Monday that the sides presented reports covering the status of Mountainous Karabagh and surrounding territory–possibility of Yerevan-Stepanakert-Baku-Nakhijevan transportation links–return of refugees–and prospects of diplomatic and economic relations.

Torosian said that Armenia’s report was based on a declaration made two years ago by political forces represented in its parliament–and that though the atmosphere of the meeting is quite favorable–the Azerbaijanis viewed the report from the Armenian side as "stern."

Delegates from both sides announced that peace would be the only acceptable resolution over the disputed enclave–and pledged their committment to end the feud.

Angus Robertson–the Scottish National Party MP for Moray–who played a prime role in arranging the Craigellachie peace summit–said that a number of issues remained unresolved.

Robertson–who chairs the Commons’ South Caucasus region all-party group–said–"There are people with very severe differences on different issues–but they realize that they have to work through them together. The fact that they were there and were agreeing on some very basic principles on which they want to take the process forward–has made the meeting an extremely useful one–as part of the wider process." Asked if there would be a "Treaty of Craigellachie" at the conclusion of the talks–Robertson responded–"An agreement is being worked on–a title has not been decided."


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