At the joint press conference with his Swedish counterpart Margot Wallström in Yerevan Feb. 9, Armenian FM Edward Nalbandian accused Azerbaijan of maintaining the status-quo on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and escalating the situation, noting that Azerbaijan continues to ignore the calls by theOSCE Minsk Group co-chairs for a peaceful settlement.
Hajiyev said since the Armenian foreign minister claims that Yerevan is uninterested in maintaining the status quo, then his country should pull out its troops from Azerbaijani territories immediately, unconditionally and completely, as stated in the UN Security Council’s resolutions 822 (1993), 853 (1993), 874 (1993), and 884 (1993).
The spokesman noted that Armenia keeps Azerbaijani lands under occupation, refusing to withdraw its armed forces from these territories.
“Armenia’s further talks about peace and claims against Azerbaijan are absurd and are the peak of irresponsibility,” said Hajiyev.
He noted that in order to achieve a comprehensive settlement and a lasting peace in the region efforts should be focused on bringing an end to the invasion— the underlying reason behind the ceasefire violations—and the withdrawal of Armenian troops from occupied Azerbaijani territories, instead of technical and auxiliary issues such as investigation of incidents. “It is all right to create technical mechanisms like investigation of incidents as an auxiliary means in the process of Armenia troops’ withdrawal from Azerbaijani territories.”
Unfortunately, focusing on technical issues such as investigation of incidents and ignoring the fact of Armenia’s occupation and annexation of Azerbaijani territories serve the preservation of the status quo and, ultimately, the interests of Armenia, Hajiyev added.
He also said that the process of withdrawal of Armenian armed forces and completion of the occupation of Azerbaijani territories should take place not in a free time mode the OSCE MG co-chairs accustomed to, but within a certain period of time.
Armenia should understand that the situation resulting from unlawful use of force and occupation can’t be considered legitimate in any case and Yerevan can’t achieve its political goals in this way, Hajiyev noted.
“Azerbaijan is the most interested party in changing status-quo and achieving a political solution to the conflict within territorial integrity, sovereignty and inviolability of internationally recognized borders. Azerbaijan will use all opportunities to ensure its territorial integrity and sovereignty within the internationally recognized borders. Therefore, the responsibility lies with Armenia,” he concluded.