Azerbaijan making preparation to liberate Nagorno-Karabakh, say DM

08:50, February 12, 2011      

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Azerbaijani Defense Minister Safar Abiyev on Friday told visiting OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs that his country was making serious preparations for the liberation of the occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region.

The Azerbaijan Press Agency quoted Abiyev as saying that while the Minsk Group has not produced concrete results from its mediating mission, Azerbaijan has not given up hope in its own mission.

The OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs who are visiting Baku included Bernard Fassier of France, Igor Popov of Russia and Robert Bradtke of the United States.

"No one can blame Azerbaijan for this matter," said the minister who expected all states to act in a similar way under the same circumstances.

Abiyev stressed the importance of applying the existing international rules in the solution of such conflicts.

The co-chairs, who have just finished a field trip to Armenia, shared with the Azerbaijani defense minister views on the situation along the contact line in the Nagorno-Karabakh area.

The OSCE group is also scheduled to meet with the Azerbaijani president and the country's foreign minister.

While in Yerevan of Armenia, the group met with the Armenian president, defense and foreign ministers.

Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a cease-fire deal in 1994 over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh, a region that lies within Azerbaijan but has been under the control of Armenian troops and ethnic Armenian forces after a separatist war broke out in 1988.

The OSCE Minsk Group, co-chaired by France, Russia and the United States, has been orchestrating the peace negotiations between the two South Caucasus countries since then.

Source: Xinhua

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