G-8 Foreign Ministers Call on Armenia, Azerbaijan to End Karabakh Conflict

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Foreign ministers of eight industrialized nations (G-8), who gathered in Potsdam, Germany Wednesday for an informal meeting, said in a joint statement that establishment of peace and stability in the South Caucasus is impossible without the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The G8 foreign ministers support the efforts by the OSCE Minsk Group and call on the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan to boost their efforts directed at achieving unanimity on the basic conflict settlement principles proposed by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs, said the statement. In this respect we welcome the intention of both presidents to meet during the CIS informal summit in St. Petersburg on 9 July, 2007 and call on them to reach an agreement on the major principles so as to open a path towards the peaceful resolution of the conflict, concluded the statement. Is Strasbourg, Council of Europe Secretary General Terry Davis voiced hope that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict would be settled before the 2008 presidential elections in Azerbaijan. During a meeting with a group of Azeri journalists in Strasbourg Wednesday, he said the resolution of the conflict would benefit the people of Armenia and Azerbaijan. Davis also expressed hope that the presidential elections in Azerbaijan would not impact the negotiations process. The CE Secretary-General said that the people of Azerbaijan should concentrate on education, health, employment and other problems. Due to the unresolved conflict too much money is spent by both countries on defense, whereas it could be directed at resolving social problems of both nations. The CE Secretary-General also advised Azerbaijan to compete with Armenia in the organization of national elections.

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