BAKU, WASHINGTON–Frustrated by what he calls a failure by the OSCE Minsk Group to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev threatened war against Artsakh, while the Minsk Group US Co-chairman urged Aliyev and Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian to meet in Paris for Karabakh talks.
Speaking after Azerbaijani Army military exercises on Thursday, Aliyev said that his country’s patience is running out and if the mediators do not resolve the conflict, he would have no other choice that to establish “territorial sovereignty” through force.
“We will stick to negotiations for the time being. But I want to once again state that we are running out of patience and that the Azerbaijani army is ready to carry out its commander-in-chief’s orders,” Aliyev said expressing his frustration that the Minsk Group mediators were more interested in establishing confidence-building measures than resolving the conflict.
For the Azerbaijani leader, resolving the conflict would mean the return of Karabakh to Azerbaijan, vowing that there will not be a second “illegitimate” Armenian republic on historic Azerbaijan, hinting at his earlier assertions that the Republic of Armenia is part of a historic Azerbaijan.
Meanwhile, in an interview with Voice of America, Warlick, the US Minsk Group Co-Chairman urged the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan to accept an invitation made by French President Francois Hollande and meet in Paris to continue talks on the Karabakh conflict.
“The presidents should accept this invitation, as a new stage is needed and it is crucial that the presidents meet,” said Warlick, who expressed alarm at the frequency of cross-border skirmishes.
“The US is very concerned about this, one life lost is already a reason for concern and more frequent cases of violence do not create the atmosphere amid which both parties can work together successfully for the sake of peace,” said Warlick. “A threat exists that the situation could get out of control and lead to resumption of hostilities – this is not wanted and measures should be taken to decrease tension.”