Meeting Between Armenian, Azeri Leaders a Sign of Progress, Says Sahakian

STEPANAKERT (ArmRadio)–The upcoming meeting between the Armenian and Azeri presidents cannot be considered as an achievement but it can be viewed as progress, Nagorno-Karabakh Republic President Bako Sahakian told reporters on Tuesday.
The meeting between the two presidents, scheduled for June 7, is to take place on the sidelines of a CIS Heads of State Summit in St. Petersburg Russia.
Noting the importance of the meeting between Serzh Sarkisian and Ilham Aliyev, Sahakian stressed that the continuation of negotiations was in itself a sign of progress.
Sahakian’s statemen’s on the importance of the upcoming meeting echoed remarks given in Baku late last week by American OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chair Matthew Bryza. The US Co-chair similarly refrained from calling it an achievement, noting that it was too early to expect any results from the meeting between the two leaders. The meeting, he stressed, was of a familiarizing nature. But everything will depend on this meeting, he added.
Sahakian also commented on the status of the so-called "line of contact" between Karabakh and Azerbaijan, explaining that all efforts are being made to prevent the likelihood of cease-fire violations.
"The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Defense Army and the authorities of the country are always taking joint measures in this direction," President Sahakian assured.
The June 7 meeting is the byproduct of talks held in Strasbourg between Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian and his Azerbaijani counterpart E;mar Mamedyarov. Earlier in May, the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan held what they described as productive talks in what was their first meeting since Nalbandian’s appointment in April. The meeting, which was held on the sidelines of a session of the Council of Europe’s decision-making Committee of Ministers, was the first between the two men, who described it as productive.

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