Genocide Recognition Issue Will Remain Priority in 2007, Says Oskanian

Armenian Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian told a press conference Tuesday that in 2007 the issue on the international recognition of the Armenian agenda will remain a priority in the Armenia’s foreign policy. He added that the 2006 was an unprecedented year in the international discussion of the Armenia Genocide. He said recognition of the Genocide by new countries brought new momentum to the effort. Oskanian also said that the Nagorno-Karabakh negotiation process will not stop, but due to the parliamentary elections in May, the process might slow down. "The process will continue at the level of foreign ministers," he said. "Perhaps there will be fewer meetings with less publicity. But I think negotiations on the content [of peace proposals] will continue." Oskanian insisted, however, that Armenian-Azeri talks will continue next year, albeit in a more "passive" format. "It will be an election year and all the attention will be focused on the elections," he told reporters. "But I think the process will not suffer from that in the substantive sense." Asked whether the conflicting parties may sign a peace accord shortly after the 2007 elections, Oskanian said: "I don’t exclude anything."

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