Andrew Schofer: U.S. contİnues to strongly support negotİated settlement to Karabakh conflİct
The United States continues to strongly support a negotiated settlement to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, U.S. Co-Chair of the OSCE Minsk Group Andrew Schofer said in a statement APAabout how the situation in Armenia could influence the U.S. role in peace process.
The co-chair noted that he will remain actively engaged with the sides in seeking a peaceful solution.
“The United States also fully supports the co-chairs’ April 23 statement calling on the sides to respect the ceasefire and take immediate measures to reduce tensions along the Line of Contact,” Schofer said, adding. “U.S. policy remains constant: the only solution to this conflict is a negotiated settlement based on international law that includes adherence to the principles of non-use of force, territorial integrity, and self-determination.”
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict entered its modern phase when the Armenian SRR made territorial claims against the Azerbaijani SSR in 1988.
A fierce war broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. As a result of the war, Armenian armed forces occupied some 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory which includes Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent districts (Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli and Zangilan), and over a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced people.
The military operations finally came to an end when Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in Bishkek in 1994.
Dealing with the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the OSCEMinsk Group, which was created after the meeting of the CSCE (OSCE after the Budapest summit held in December 1994) Ministerial Council in Helsinki on 24 March 1992. The Group’s members include Azerbaijan, Armenia, Russia, the United States, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Belarus, Finland and Sweden.
Besides, the OSCE Minsk Group has a co-chairmanship institution, comprised of Russian, the US and French co-chairs, which began operating in 1996.
Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 of the UN Security Council, which were passed in short intervals in 1993, and other resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly, PACE, OSCE, OIC, and other organizations require Armenia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from Nagorno-Karabakh.