Russia, Azerbaijan start talks, including on Karabakh conflict

ITAR-TASS News Agency
August 18, 2004 Wednesday

Russia, Azerbaijan start talks, including on Karabakh conflict

By Natalya Lenskaya, Irina Chumakova


Russian and Azerbaijan foreign ministers Sergei Lavrov and Elmar
Mamedyarov started talks in Moscow, one of whose topics will be the
Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The Azerbaijan minister arrived in the
Russian capital on an official visit on Tuesday.

Russia hails the continuation of the Azerbaijan-Armenian dialogue at
various levels, Tass learnt from Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman
Boris Malakhov. “We believe that the participants in the conflict
should find out a mutually acceptable solution,” the Russian diplomat
emphasized. Moscow “is ready to render in this case the most active
assistance both on a bilateral basis and as a co-chairman of the OSCE
Minsk Group”, he added.

Struggle against terrorism will be also considered at the ministers’
meeting. They want to pay special attention to practical steps in
countering this threat.

Besides, Malakhov continued, the ministers will exchange opinions on
the regional and international situations as well as higher
cooperation within the Commonwealth of Independent States.

They will also discuss implementation of top-level understandings,
aimed at boosting volumes of bilateral economic cooperation,
including doubling of trade turnover. According to the spokesman,
Lavrov and Mamedyarov will discuss work on a legal status of the
Caspian and prospects for the second Caspian summit.

It is the first official visit by Mamedyarov to Russia as Azerbaijan
foreign minister. He was appointed to this post last April.