BAKU: OSCE MG co-chairs to visit Baku

Azer Tag, Azerbaijan
July 14 2004

[July 14, 2004, 13:49:37]

According to the information received by AzerTAj, co-chairmen of the
OSCE Minsk Group for Nagorny Karabakh settlement, Yury Merzlyakov
(Russia), Steven Mann (USA) and Henri Jacolin (France), will pay a
2-day visit to Azerbaijan.

As the Azerbaijan Foreign Ministry reported, the aim of the visit by
the co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group is to conduct consultations
with the Baku officials concerning the settlement of the Nagorny
Karabakh conflict. They plan to meet with a number of the Azerbaijan

The co-chairmen will arrive in Baku from Armenia where they stay now
in the context of their Trans-Caucasian tour.

As Azerbaijan Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said, “I would not
say that the co-chairmen would arrive with some new proposals. Since
they did not visit the region in the course of the last six months,
the sides will only exchange opinions.’

Before the visit of the co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group to the
region, special representative of the European Union for the South
Caucasus Heikki Talvitie said at the news conference in the
Azerbaijan capital that there were “new moments” with regard to the
settlement of the conflict, which the co-chairmen will discuss with
the sides to the conflict. This visit will be very important,” he
added. “I am glad that both Yerevan and Baku support the activity of
the Minsk Group co-chairmen who have done a great work,” he said.

The EU spokesman did not specify these “new moments.” However, the
official position of Baku, Yerevan and Stepanakert has not changed
today, at the tenth anniversary of the armistice. Baku is ready to
give Nagorny Karabakh the broadest autonomy, but it is flatly against
the independence of the territory.