Former Karabakh Mediator Says No Sign of Progress

YEREVAN (ArmRadio)–A former Co-chairman of the OSCE Minsk Group on Tuesday characterized as minimal the chances of achieving any real and tangible progress in the settlement of the Karabakh Conflict are currently not high.
According to former Russian Minsk Group Co-Chair Vladimir Kazimirov, the key to the resolution of the conflict is to prevent the resumption of military activities between the two countries.
A danger persists so long as there are no assurances that military activities will not resume, he said. Meanwhile, the Azerbaijani’s are daily thinking about a military solution to the conflict, while the Armenia’s are reinforcing their own military positions along the "line of contact."
"Thus, the issue still remains on the field of battle and not in the political arena," he said.
But it is imperative that any resumption of military actions be prevented, he stressed, explaining that unlike other conflicts in the region, the Karabakh Conflict has deep roots in history, which have resulted in mistrust and even hatred between the two countries.
Both Armenia and Azerbaijan must be ready to guarantee that the cease-fire agreement, which was signed in 1994, will not be breached.
But this is not the case right now, he noted.
Kazimirov explained the unwillingness to maintain the cease-fire regime stems from the fact that the underdog won the war. The losing side, which seemed much stronger, was left with a deep sense of revenge at the close of the conflict.
No other country or people that has been involved in a conflict in the former Soviet Union focuses as much on a military solution as does Baku, he explained.
"First of all, this approach must be eliminated," he stressed. "This is the key issue, and only its solution will prevent a future resumption of the war."

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