Armenian paper accuses OSCE Karabakh mission of one-sidedness

Armenian paper accuses OSCE Karabakh mission of one-sidedness

Ayots Ashkar, Yerevan
9 Feb 05

Excerpt from Vardan Grigoryan’s report by Armenian newspaper Ayots
Ashkar on 9 February headlined “We and the OSCE monitoring mission”

The results of the OSCE monitoring mission to the liberated territories
[Nagornyy Karabakh] will be made public only in spring. But today
problems have already emerged which the Armenian party has to
attend to.

Although the head of the mission, Emily Haber, and its members assured
us that they were implementing only technical work and were not going
to make any political statement, this kind of initiative itself gives
us certain grounds for political conclusions.

At issue is first of all the political context of the monitoring
mission. The OSCE Minsk Group co-chairmen’s latest statement implies
that Azerbaijan is trying to put on the UN agenda one of the details
of the negotiations held in Astana and Prague: the problem of refugees
and territories seized as a result of the war. In fact, Azerbaijan
has made a manoeuvre that has distracted the world community. Since in
turn the Armenian party did not object to the OSCE sending a monitoring
mission to Karabakh, the mission was given a green light automatically.

Even the monitors hint at the one-sidedness of their own mandate,
i.e. the refusal to visit Shaumyan [Goranboy], Getashen [Caykand]
and other districts controlled by the Azerbaijani armed forces is
temporary. That is to say, if Armenia, for its part, applies to the
UN, a new mission may be organized by mutual agreement of the parties.

Naturally, this position of the OSCE Minsk Group and of the monitoring
mission members causes a number of questions connected with one

First, what is the reason of this close attention of the world
community to the known manoeuvre of Azerbaijan? Second, may the results
of the monitoring of only the territories controlled by the Armenian
forces become a basis for all-embracing political conclusions for
the world community? Third, are the views sounding in Armenia that
the OSCE monitoring mission arrived in the region with two versions
of the report prepared in advance substantiated? For this reason,
everything will depend not on the results of the visit but on how
the Armenian party will behave in future.

There are several answers to these questions.

a) What happened is a result of agreement between Azerbaijan’s
“caprice” and the Armenian party’s kind will. Therefore, it is natural
that the monitors’ report, as well as further steps stemming from it,
should lead to the conclusions stemming from this logic. [Sentence
as received]

b) The OSCE monitoring mission’s one-sided mandate creates a basis for
biased conclusions, which will spur the transfer of the negotiations
within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group onto quite a different
plain by means of more monitoring missions to Karabakh and the
liberated territories.

Obviously, in case of the first option, we may not pay attention to
what has happened. But if some international organizations continue
to support Azerbaijan’s current attempt to divert the course of the
negotiations, it is imperative that Armenia take steps in response.

[Passage omitted: minor details]