Aliyev Rejects Compromise; Says No to Karabakh Self-Determination

BAKU (–Azeri President Ilham Aliyev has rejected a compromise proposal by his Armenian counterpart, Serzh Sarkisian that territory for security and self-determination for the Nagorno-Karabakh republic.

Sarkisian on Monday said Armenia could consider returning some of the liberated territories between Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan only after firm guarantees from Baku and the international community for the security and self-determination for the people of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Aliyev ruled out that option during a speech at a holiday celebration on Wednesday marking the start of Spring in Azerbaijan.

“That independence of Nagorno Karabakh beyond Azerbaijan is absolutely unacceptable. This is our principal position. Nagorno Karabakh will never be independent,” Aliyev said. “Azerbaijan will never recognize [Karabakh] and the international community will never recognize it.”

The conflict’s settlement is “the most important problem” facing Azerbaijan, Aliyev said, adding that the country has been quickly developing its economy and military to “strengthen its position in the negotiations process.”

“Today we are the most economically developed country of the region and our development cannot be compared to the development of other countries,” he said in an apparent reference to neighboring Armenia and Karabakh.


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