BAKU: Minister says no proposals discussed in Armenian-Azeri talks

Minister says no proposals discussed in Armenian-Azeri talks in Poland

ANS TV, Baku
28 Apr 04

[Presenter] We are going live to Strasbourg again. ANS TV’s special
correspondent Qanira Pasayeva is on the line. Good evening,
Qanira. Who met the [Azerbaijani] president at Strasbourg airport?
Could you also give us information about the trilateral meeting
between [Georgian President] Mikheil Saakashvili, [Armenian President]
Robert Kocharyan [and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev] in Warsaw

[Qanira Pasayeva over the phone] Hello, Aytan. Our plane has just
landed. The reception will probably start in five or six minutes. I
mean the president’s plane has landed in Strasbourg as well.

An hour and 40 minutes ago, the president was in Warsaw, Poland. The
Armenian, Azerbaijani and Georgian presidents had a working lunch
there to discuss Caucasus issues. After the trilateral meeting, the
three presidents answered questions from delegations at the European
economic summit.

The most interesting questions were about regional
cooperation. President Ilham Aliyev said that Azerbaijan was
cooperating with Georgia at the highest level in all spheres. But
cooperation with Armenia is out of the question. Cooperation with
Armenia is possible only after the Nagornyy Karabakh problem is

Robert Kocharyan said that cooperation could promote a solution to the
problem. But the Azerbaijani president said that this was ruled out.

The Georgian president said that regional cooperation with Azerbaijan
was at a very high level. But conflicts hinder full cooperation and
economic development in the region. President Ilham Aliyev backed up
this statement.

As for the Nagornyy Karabakh conflict, the Azerbaijani president said
that Azerbaijan will not make any concessions that run counter to the
following: Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity should be ensured in
line with international legal norms. Robert Kocharyan answered in
general and did not say anything specific.

Another interesting question was about integration into the European
Union and membership of this union in the future. The Armenian
president did not give a concrete answer. But the Azerbaijani and
Georgian presidents said that Azerbaijan and Georgia were interested
in entering the EU. President Ilham Aliyev said that Azerbaijan was
integrating into European structures, which would secure the country’s
membership of the EU.

Armenian Foreign Minister Vardan Oskanyan gave an exclusive interview
to ANS concerning the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents’ meeting
today. He said that today the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents had
a general discussion on the Nagornyy Karabakh issue. No concrete
proposal was discussed. The [OSCE Minsk Group] co-chairmen did not put
forward any new proposals or ideas. They simply attended the
meeting. Asked whether any discussions had been held on the package or
step-by-step settlement, Oskanyan said that no discussions had been
held on concrete proposals and that the discussions had a general
nature. His meeting with the Azerbaijani foreign minister in May will
decide whether a concrete proposal will be negotiated.

He said that there will be a NATO summit in Istanbul in late June. He
will raise the issue of opening the Turkish-Armenian border at a
meeting with Ankara officials at the summit. Commenting on a
trilateral meeting proposed by Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul,
Vardan Oskanyan said that if the meeting is to discuss the Karabakh
issue, Armenia will not agree to it. If the agenda includes issues
other than Karabakh, they will attend the meeting.

Bilateral issues were discussed at the bilateral meeting with Mikheil

[Presenter] Thank you, Qanira. This was ANS TV’s special correspondent
Qanira Pasayeva reporting from Strasbourg.

Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS