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    Armenia PM says he cannot negotiate on Karabakh’s behalf

    June 8, 2018 12:50 News, Politics A+ / A-

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    The talks on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) conflict cannot be considered productive unless the leadership of Artsakh participates in them.

    Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan on Thursday said the abovementioned at the special session of the National Assembly, as he presented the program of the new government of the country.

    In his words, many people viewed this position as a novelty in the negotiation process, whereas there is nothing new in it.

    “What is considered a novelty is just the well-forgotten old,” Pashinyan stated. “The fact that Artsakh is a full-fledged party to the negotiations was confirmed at the OSCE summit in Budapest in 1994. The negotiation process took place in that very format until 1998.

    “The people of Karabakh don’t participate in the elections of Armenia. Instead, they have their own authorities, and the people of Karabakh can be represented [in these peace talks] solely by their [own] legitimate authorities. “

    The Armenian PM noted that every time when such a matter is raised, Azerbaijan says representatives of the “Azerbaijani community of Karabakh” also must partake in these talks.

    “This is a false argument because the legal status of the Azerbaijanis who lived in Karabakh underwent no change due to the conflict,” he explained. “They remain Azerbaijani citizens and continue to participate in Azerbaijani elections, as Azerbaijani citizens. It means that [Azerbaijan President Ilham] Aliyev is participating in the negotiations also with the mandate given [to him] by those people. It means that those people are already engaged in the negotiations, in the person of the Azerbaijan president.”

    Also, Pashinyan said those who interpret these views of theirs as an attempt to terminate the Karabakh peace talks do not assess the situation correctly.

    “I’m ready to negotiate with the Azerbaijan president, within the framework of the OSCE [Minsk Group] co-chairmanship,” he added. “But bringing the previously made arrangements to fruition is important in terms of increasing the effectiveness of the negotiations. It’s inconvenient to negotiate on new matters if the previous arrangements are not fulfilled. Each and every adventurism by the adversary will be met by our crushing counterstrike.”

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