Azerbaijan Does Not Cooperate with OSCE Monitoring Mission

The Askeran region was part of the OSCE monitorin mission

YEREVAN (Combined Sources)—The Azeri side failed to lead a scheduled OSCE monitoring mission to the Line of Contact in the Askeran region Thursday, causing the international team to not properly conduct its mission, reported ArmRadio.

The OSCE delegation was to monitor to areas of the LoC, one at the village of Talish in the Mardakert region and the second near the Akna settlement in the Askeran region. The first monitoring was scrapped due to heavy fog.

During the monitoring in the Askeran direction, which was planned on the proposal of Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk, the Azerbaijan side did not lead the OSCE Mission to the earlier agreed upon site on the front-lines, as a result groups had to monitor the situation from afar. The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Army fully cooperated with the demands of the mission and guided the monitors to their desired locations.

Representatives of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic defense and foreign ministries accompanied the OSCE monitors on the mission.

Meanwhile in Yerevan, Armenia’s Foreign Ministry welcomed a the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairmen’s Wednesday proposal to conduct a LoC monitoring .

“Armenian and Karabakh have always demonstrated a positive attitude toward calls of the UN Secretary General, the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs and the OSCE Chairman-in-Office to pull back the snipers from the line of contact, which will minimize incidents and will create a positive atmosphere in the resolution process,” added Balayan.

The Minsk Group co-chairmen issued a statement Wednesday, expressing concern over the violation of cease-fire provisions.

A day before a summit in Sochi between President Serzh Sarkisian and his Azeri counterpart Ilham Aliyev, Azeri snipers shot and killed an Armenian soldier. The two leaders’ talks, which were mediated by Russian President Demitry Medvedev did not touch on the matter. On Wednesday, the defense ministries of Armenia and the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic refuted Azeri Army claims that Karabakh soldiers shot and killed a nine-year-old boy. The defense ministries called this latest Azeri misinformation campaign “cheap” and “shameful.” 

The OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Audronius Ažubalis, will travel to Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia next week to meet government leaders and representatives of political parties to discuss OSCE work in the region and the Lithuanian Chairmanship’s priorities for 2011.

Ažubalis plans to meet the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan, Prime Minister of Georgia, foreign ministers, political leaders and civil society representatives of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia.

Progress toward the resolution of protracted conflicts in the OSCE region is a key priority for Lithuania’s OSCE Chairmanship. The Chairperson will discuss the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution process, co-operation with the OSCE, in particular with its Offices in Yerevan and Baku, to support reforms and challenges addressed in the Geneva talks.

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