Karabakh Must be Part of Peace Process, Says Hovanessian

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Without participation of Nagorno-Karabakh in the peace process, the conflict cannot be resolved, said Armenian Revolutionary Federation Bureau member and Deputy Speaker of Armenia’s parliament Vahan Hovanessian during a round table discussion Wednesday organized by the ARF Supreme Council. Entitled "Armenia’s Response to Turkish and Azeri Propaganda," the roundtable aimed to address the impact of the anti-Armenian campaign by Turkey and Azerbaijan on regional stability and national security of nations. "We should make our position clearer by demanding to involve the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic in the negotiations process," said Hovanessian who added that this inclusion would provide new meaning and impetus to the peace process. The ARF leader outlined that Turkish and Azeri propaganda had three main targets: the international community and the people of Armenia and Azerbaijan. He explained that to the international community, Azerbaijan is being presented as a victim and a frail country, while to Armenia’s and Azeris; Azerbaijan is being portrayed as a strong force. "We should be able to show this contradiction to the international community." Hovanessian underscored that while Armenia was a side to the conflict that is negotiating with Azerbaijan to prepare the ground for a resolution to the conflict. In this process, however, Azerbaijan has been intolerant and unwilling. He explained that the time is ripe to incorporate the Karabakh viewpoint in the process. The ARF leader also discussed the pending construction of the Kars-Akhalkalak-Baku railway, which intentionally bypasses Armenia. "Of course, from an economic point of view the project might harm Armenia, nevertheless it is necessary to shift the focus from the economic element and look at it as a national security issue," said Hovanessian. He said the railway would be extremely threatening to the national security as it will link Azerbaijan and Turkey. "We should not simply ask, but must demand from the international community to halt the construction of the railway," he emphasized.

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