OSCE Minsk Group US Co-chair twits his support of Putin’s initiative of meetings with Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents
YEREVAN, August 8. /ARKA/. The US Co-chair of OSCE Minsk Group James Warlick twitted he supported Russian president Vladimir Putin’s initiative to meet with Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents Serzh Sargsyan and Ilham Aliev.
‘We urge strict respect for the ceasefire’, Warlick said.
The meetings of the presidents of Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan will be held on Saturday August 9 in Sochi. The recent escalation in Nagorno-Karabakh will be discussed during the meetings.
Azerbaijan has largely intensified its military efforts along the line of contact with Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR) since the end of July. Over 25 Azerbaijani and six Karabakh servicemen were killed in the latest raid operations and attempts by Azerbaijani troops to attack Karabakh’s positions.
The Karabakh conflict started in 1988 when prevailingly Armenian population of Nagorno-Karabakh declared withdrawal from Azerbaijan. On December 10, 1991, a referendum was held in Nagorno-Karabakh where 99.89% voted for independence from Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan responded by large-scale military operations that led to loss of control not only over Nagorno-Karabakh itself, but also over seven adjoining areas. About 25-30 thousands people were killed and about a million had to leave their homes during the military operations.
A trilateral cease-fire agreement was signed on May 12, 2004, and has been followed since then.
The ongoing Karabakh peace process started in 1992 under auspices of OSCE Minsk Group co-chaired by the USA, Russia and France. –0—