New War Will Destroy Azerbaijan, US Diplomat Says

YEREVAN (Combined Sources)–A new war would be catastrophic for Azerbaijan’s future, said US Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried in an interview Thursday with Azeri service of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.
Asked whether with both Armenia and Azerbaijan entering their election cycles, he was less optimistic about the chances for success in the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process and whether he thought that the presidents have missed an opportunity Daniel Fried said, “I don’t want to be critical, I think that we were all disappointed that the last trip of the Contact Group didn’t yield the results we had hoped. There have been good negotiations, well good talks I should say, some progress has been made and at some point I hope that the leaders of the two countries will find a way forward.”
“Azerbaijan’s future is vague until this problem is resolved,” the American diplomat underlined.
“Ultimately, the peaceful resolution of the conflict is in everyone’s interests. The future of Azerbaijan will be under a cloud as long as this issue is not resolved and it can only be resolved peacefully. A war is going to destroy Azerbaijan’s future and do no one any good. A peaceful settlement is the way to go. We’ve come this far and I hope that we can resolve it,” added the diplomat.
Meanwhile, in Baku Azerbaijan welcomed a statement by Armenian foreign minister Vartan Oskanian that his government wanted to establish and maintain friendly relations with all its neighbors.
Oskanian made this statement in an interview with the Armenian language bi-weekly Huys, published in Tehran. He also said that Armenia wanted to have an active role in regional and global developmen’s.
Khazar Ibrahimov, a spokesman for Azeri foreign ministry, said in an interview with the Russian Interfax news agency that “it is very positive that Armenia’s foreign minister wants his country to have a deserved place in the world.”
“I think Armenia’s leadership eventually has come to realize that Azerbaijan has left their country behind politically and economically. In terms of economic development today Azerbaijan is the number one nation, its international political clout is likewise on the rise. With this in mind it is quite natural that Armenia also wants to have its place in the world,” he said.

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