NK officials reiterate the need for new negotiation format

March 16 2004


YEREVAN, MARCH 16, ARMENPRESS: Nagorno Karabagh parliament
chairman Oleg Yesayan and foreign affairs minister Ashot Ghulian met
today with Ursula Schleikher, head of a European Union’s delegation
that has arrived in Armenia to attend the 6-sixth session of
EU-Armenia parliamentary commission. The meeting was held at Karabagh
representation in Yerevan and was focused mainly on ways of resolving
the ongoing conflict.
Speaking to journalists after the meeting, Ghulian said Karabagh
speaker has once again repeated that the conflict could be resolved
only with participation of its representatives in the talks, as “its
population’s security and future are on stake,” but added that
Karabagh’s desire to reshape the format of negotiations is not
sufficient. “Azerbaijan is trying now to complicate the negotiation
process and it is hard to mention a concrete date when Karabagh may
be involved in them,” he said.
According to Ghulian, Europe’s willingness to assume a bigger role
in the regulation of the conflict is the evidence of its growing
interest in the region, confirmed also by appointing a Special
Representative of the EU for the South Caucasus, “but so far the
EU-South Caucasus partnership has not gone beyond the boundaries of
economic and humanitarian aid.”
Admitting that the talks are in a deadlock, Karabagh foreign
minister said there are indications of new upcoming contacts between
Armenian and Azeri officials and only after these meetings one can
say if there is a progress.