State Department Presses new Attack Against Karabakh Self Determination

WASHINGTON–Bush Administration officials continued to press forward their new, more aggressive position against freedom for Nagorno Karabakh, citing, as recently as Friday in Yerevan, that a resolution of this longstanding conflict must proceed from the
principle of Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity, while remaining conspicuously silent on the core American value of self-determination, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

Over the past several weeks, since the time of Vice President Dick Cheney’s early September visit to Azerbaijan, the Administration has rolled back any mention of self-determination, eliminating any reference to this core international legal and democratic principle from its diplomatic vocabulary. Speaking in Baku, the Vice
President ‘s echoing Azerbaijan’s negotiating stand ‘s said that a Nagorno Karabakh settlement "must proceed" from the principle of territorial integrity and only "take into account other principles." As recently as earlier today, in Armenia, Assistant
Secretary of State Dan Fried repeated the newly formulated U.S. stand that a Nagorno Karabagh settlement must start from the principle of "territorial integrity," although he did concede that there were "other established norms," an apparent reference to democracy and self-determination, which he carefully avoided naming.

In a January 19, 2008 statement, Presidential candidate Barack Obama pleged that, if elected, he would work for "a lasting and durable settlement of the Nagorno Karabagh conflict that is agreeable to all parties, and based upon America’s founding commitment to the principles of democracy and self determination."

ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian addressed the retreat by Administration officials from its honest broker role in a video posted on YouTube.

An ANCA action alert provides an opportunity for individuals to share their views on this matter directly with the White House: http://capwiz.com/anca/issues/alert/?alertid=12075481&type=PR

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