Kocharian is More ‘Cautious’ in Assessing Karabakh Process, Says Spokesman

Presidential spokesman Viktor Soghomonyan

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–President Robert Kocharian’s optimism regarding prospects for the Karabakh conflict resolution “has become more cautious,” said presidential spokesman Viktor Soghomonyan in an interview with the Moscow-based Mediamax agency.
Commenting on the current stage of negotiations and the statemen’s of official Baku that the process has entered a deadlock, Soghomonyan said “In reality, it is very difficult to give a definite evaluation to the current state of negotiations. I would prefer to keep away from harsh formulations, especially considering that, as a rule, the evaluations of the negotiation process by conflicting sides are often subjective.”
“In any case, the reality is that the talks have not yielded any results thus far. For us the reasons of this situation are clear. It is the non constructive position of the Azeri side, the illusions that time can be turned back, history can be edited and there can be a return to the situation of 1988,” added the spokesperson.
“The existence of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic is an irrefutable fact and it cannot be a matter of dispute. For that very reason, taking into consideration Azerbaijan’s obviously destructive way of action, President Kocharyan has declared many times that he looks at the perspectives of solution with cautious optimism. Unfortunately, it seems that the President’s optimism has turned more cautious today,” explained Soghomonyan.
Regarding recent allegations by President of Azeri Ilham Aliyev against Armenia in an interview with a Kazakh newspaper, the spokesman’said: “Unfortunately, as you can see, Mr. Aliyev’s political will and bravery were enough just for making another inaccurate statement. I will not comment on these statemen’s. I just say that there are those who are concerned for Armenia’s and the future of Armenia and the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. Mr. Aliyev should address his own problems,” asserted the spokesman.
In a recent interview Aliyev said: “Armenia is not sincere and tries to waste time and deceive the mediators.” He also said that if “Armenia’stops the policy of occupation, the relations between Baku and Yerevan would be normalized and Armenia will get more cooperation from Azerbaijan than from foreign charities.”
Arman Melikian, an aide to the outgoing president of Nagorno-Karabakh Arkady Ghoukasian, argued earlier this summer in favor of changing the current format of talks over Nagorno-Karabakh conflict saying the latter should also be involved in the negotiation process.
“The fact that international peace brokers ignore the Nagorno-Karabakh side means that they want to reach a predetermined agreement, in which the interests of Nagorno-Karabakh are not a priority,” he said.
He then declined the cautious optimism of the OSCE Minsk Group cochairmen from Russia and French who told today morning in Yerevan they expected progress in the deadlocked conflict.
Melikian, however, praised the cochairmen for saying that while discussing the return of refugees and IDPs to their homes they do not have in mind their national belonging. Melikian said he would like the cochairmen to highlight also the fate of thousands of Armenian refugees form Azerbaijan.

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