No Breakthrough in Kazan Says FM Okanian

YEREVAN (RFE/RL/Yerkir)–Armenia’s foreign minister Vartan Oskanian indicated that though talks between the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan were positive–there were no breakthroughs resulting from their weekend meeting in Kazan.

"True–no breakthrough was achieved during that meeting–but we do consider it positive and believe that the negotiations are following a positive course," he told a news conference on Tuesday.

"The most important thing is that the presidents’ meeting in Kazan enables the [foreign] ministers to continue their work. I think that there will be a meeting of the ministers in the near future."

He pointed out that the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group may also be visiting the region.

"I think that we have some work to do regarding the results of the presidents’ meeting and that there is now new room for continuing the process," Oskanian said.

Oskanian’s Azeri counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov seems to agree. He told reporters on Monday that though each presidential meeting is a step forward–it is too early to talk about progress. "We have not yet reached a point where we need to inform our public about details," he explained. "We are still not there. That is why it is not worth thinking about that," he told reporters on Monday.

Talks between Armenian President Robert Kocharian and Azeri President Ilham Aliyev were held on the sidelines of the August 27 summit of the Commonwealth of Independent States in Kazan–the capital of Russia’s Tatarstan.

Oskanian provided to reporters an overview of that summit as well as Armenia’s integration process into Europe–emphasizing joint projects carried out by Armenia–the European Union–and NATO.

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