BAKU: US disappointed by words of its own Ambassador to Armenia

Azer Tag, Azerbaijan State Info Agency
Feb 27 2005

[February 27, 2005, 22:55:04]

As AzerTAj’s Washington correspondent reports, some news agencies
based on armenian sources quoted US Ambassador to Amernia as saying
`Karabakh can not be given to Azerbaijan’. He said this while
speaking in Berkley University, CA to the members of Armenian
Diaspora. It is strange to hear these words from the representative
of US Administartion, that has always made clear its support to
territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and never recognized
Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent state.

The words of Ambassador John Evans should be considered as a `private
comment at a private party’ said State Department official Steve
Pike, commenting on the odd statement of its Ambassador to Armenia.
`They do not reflect US official position on this issue. US policy on
Nagorno-Karabakh remains unchanged’, he added.

Azerbaijani Ambassador to US Hafiz Pashayev discussed this incident
with US officials, as well as with Laura Kenndey, Deputy Assistant
Secretary on Caucasus, Central Asia and Southeast Europe. According
to Hafiz Pashayev, from his conversations with US officials he
concluded that American side was disappointed with John Evans’s
statement. US officials once again reassured Azerbaijani Ambassador
that the United States supports the territorial integrity of
Azerbaijan and doesn’t recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent
state, nor it recognizes its authorities.

`This is an irresponsible statement to make on the eve of the next
meeting of Foreign Affairs Ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia. John
Evans should give an explanation to his statement’, Azerbaijani
Ambassador added. `Every Ambassador tries to be particularly careful
in the statements and not use a word that might undermine an official
stance of his country in a certain issue. It seems, that an
atmosphere of two week long meetings in different states with
Armenian Diaspora influenced Ambassador Evans in such an extent, that
he didn’t adhere to this basic principle of diplomacy. ‘