Armenian, Azeri Foreign Ministers Discuss Karabakh Conflict at OSCE Summit

YEREVAN (Combined Sources)–Armenian Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian and his Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov met Wednesday in Madrid on the eve of the 15th annual summit of the Council of OSCE Foreign Ministers to discuss the ongoing Karabakh settlement process with the three OSCE Co-Chairs, the Russian and French Foreign Ministers and the U.S. Deputy Secretary of State on political issues.
The Co-Chairs provided Oskanian and Mammadyarov with a package of 10 proposals for the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict.
The parties discussed general issues involving conflict resolution, a number of uncoordinated issues in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process and the Madrid Declaration.
"We presented several base principles during the meeting and we believe that the Presidents of both states will solve these issues by election time," OSCE Minsk Group U.S. Co-Chair Matthew Bryza said. "We have held many productive meetings within the past three months and now we are offering a compromise solution for the two parties."
Bryza noted that the possibility of a ministerial or presidential meeting depends on the willingness of both sides. The Co-Chairs are awaiting their response.
Commenting on Azerbaijani Defense Minister Safar Abiyev’s belligerent statement on the high probability of war with Armenia, the Bryza remarked, "this process has continued for over 10 years and we all agree that it must be resolved peacefully."
The summit began Thursday with foreign ministers and high-level representatives from the 56 OSCE countries discussing a wide-ranging agenda, including the ongoing Nagorno-Karabakh settlement process.
"I have said that I see a ‘golden opportunity’ for the signing of a peace treaty and I continue to think so," The President of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly Goran Lenmarker said during the summit. "The OSCE has presented a framework agreement. To sign it, leaders of both countries must demonstrate political will."
Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos declared that for solving the "frozen conflicts" it is necessary to demonstrate political will and courage.
"In order to reach peace and peaceful conditions of co-existence in our countries and to solve the conflicts including the ones in Moldova, Georgia and Nagorno-Karabakh we need the will and political courage to hold decisive talks," Moratinos said.
Moratinos urged the participants to come to a common opinion in order help "ensure the security of the OSCE member states."
Meanwhile, Portugal’s Foreign Minister, President of the EU Council Luis Amado called on Armenia and Azerbaijan "to get fully involved" in the negotiations.
"The OSCE Minsk Group and the three Co-Chairs have been working hard on the fair and balanced principles of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution," Amado said. "The European Union supports the active dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan and wishes to use this opportunity to urge the parties to get fully involved in the negotiations."


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