Karabakh Mediators ‘Satisfied’ With Trip To Armenia, Karabakh

The U.S., French and Russian co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group pictured before meeting President Serzh Sarkisian in Yerevan, 29 March 2010.

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)—The parties to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict remain committed to its peaceful resolution based on the basic principles proposed by international mediators, the American, French and Russian co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group said on Tuesday.

“After the recent meetings between the Co-Chairs and the parties in Paris and in the region, the Co-Chairs note with satisfaction the commitment of the parties to reach a peaceful settlement within the framework of the Madrid Principles,” they said in a joint statement issued after a visit to Stepanakert and Yerevan.

The co-chairs met with the leadership of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic at the weekend and held talks with President Serzh Sarkisian and Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian in Yerevan on Monday.

The statement said they further discussed “Armenian comments on the Basic Principles” that were modified by the mediating powers late last year. It gave no other details.

Yuri Merzlyakov, the Minsk Group’s outgoing Russian co-chair, said in Stepanakert that Yerevan disagrees with some points of the “updated” peace plan. He downplayed the unspecified objections, saying that they do not bode ill for the success of the protracted negotiating process.

The statement did not say whether the mediators will make additional changes in the so-called Madrid Document to make it more acceptable to the Armenian side. Nor did it mention the possibility of yet another meeting of the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents in the coming weeks.

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