Question Of Mandate Seems Pointless


Azat Artsakh – Nagorno Karabakh Republic (NKR)
27 Feb 05

The report of the commission of the EC Committee of Ministers argues
that RA president Robert Kocharian told the commission that he had
been given the mandate to conduct negotiations for the settlement of
the Karabakh conflict by the NKR authorities. Did the NKR government
really grant such power to the RA president? â~@~S From where did this
question occur at all? What does the mandate have to do here? After
the summit in Lisbon in 1996 the negotiations in the framework of the
OSCE Minsk Group were stopped, while Nagorni Karabakh had only this
opportunity to take part in negotiations. In other formats Azerbaijan
did not wish to talk to NKR. In this situation the presidents of
Armenia and Azerbaijan agreed to discuss the relationships of the two
countries at the top level, including the topic of settlement of the
conflict relationships. Now is there any need for mandate for this? The
government of Armenia which is the guarantor of the security of the
people of NKR, determines its policy itself, which can be assessed by
the citizens and political forces of Armenia. It is not up to Nagorni
Karabakh to decide what is wrong and what is right in this matter. In
this sense we do not even have the right to impact the actions of the
sovereign Armenian republic. It is another question that we arrogate to
ourselves the right to express openly our own standpoint concerning
all the aspects of our issue and the impact of the conflict on
the interests of Armenia. Our standpoint was and is expressed
unambiguously. We have always thought that without the participation
of NKR the negotiations cannot be effective. What is more, significant
problems occur for Armenia and NKR both from the point of view of
diplomacy of settlement and on the international scene in general. We
think, Armenia does not have any responsibilities for the consequences
of the conflict, particularly territories outside its territory
of sovereignty and humanitarian problems before the international
community. The settlement of similar problems is the authority of NKR
and we see the settlement of these problems in direct negotiations with
Azerbaijan which is dissatisfied with NKR. On the other hand, the NKR
government is attentive towards everything that can have a negative
impact on the fate of Armenia. We have no wish to solve our problems at
the expense of Armenia, and generally by way of causing moral damage
to the people of Armenia. Therefore, the question of mandating the RA
president seems pointless. Everybody must feel responsible for the
settlement of those difficult problems together. And if something
is wrong, the situation must be discussed calmly and additional
opportunities must be sought for to overcome them. I think, today in
the world they begin to understand the standpoint of NKR. Recently
in the resolution of the PACE on Nagorni Karabakh the idea was set
forth clearly that the failure of the decade-old negotiations was
caused by the absence of direct dialogue between the governments of
Azerbaijan and NKR, and the improvement of the prospect for settlement
is connected with the necessity of such a dialogue. â~@~S But the
author of the resolution David Atkinson told in his interview to BBC
about the unacceptability of the principle of self-determination in
the settlement of the Karabakh conflict. – Everything is correct. He
does not believe that Azerbaijan may recognize the independence of
NKR. But it is already enough that Atkinson expresses the opinion of
Europe that the sides will make their decisions themselves. That is to
say, there is no complex in reference to the question that NKR may be
recognized as an independent country. Let them seat the sides at the
table of negotiations, and time will show. Why, and you want to make
a guess for everything beforehand. NKR IS WILLING TO NEGOTIATE The
political adviser to the NKR president Manvel Sarghissian, touching
upon the talks for the NKR issue in his interview to our newspaper,
implied that they are rather talks for the bilateral relationships
between Armenia and Azerbaijan. At the same time he added that although
Armenia is the country that guarantees the security of the people
of NKR, its government decides on its foreign policy, including for
Azerbaijan, itself. Mr. Sarghissian also said that Armenia, in fact,
faces difficult problems connected with the fact that the problem of
Karabakh is not settled yet. â~@~These also wait for their solution
through negotiations. Moreover, Armenia has its own understanding
of the fate of NKR,â~@~] said Manvel Sarghissian. Commenting on
David Atkinsonâ~@~Ys resolution adopted by the PACE, the adviser to
the NKR president said, â~@~The PACE resolution is first of all
a political document. Such resolutions form a background for real
politics. Therefore, we need to be interested in the real steps of the
EC starting from this resolution. Today the resolution is interpreted
in different ways, for which the document provides a wide scene. But as
it is necessary to think about the prospect of real policies conducted
by the EC, it is more preferable to follow the interpretations of the
resolution by the Europeans. In this sense I would like to draw your
attention to the interview of the author of the resolution to the BBC
immediately after the adoption of the resolution by the PACE. Pay
attention to such concepts as â~@~during ten years after signing
cease-fire the sides did not achieve peace because there were no
real relationships between the Azerbaijani and NK authoritiesâ~@¦ ,
it is necessary to start negotiations, to maintain a dialogue for its
settlementâ~@¦, the PACE suggested shifting the Minsk process to the
parliamentary plain levelâ~@¦ , and if the people of Karabakh maintain
the present independence, de facto independence from Azerbaijan,
and Azerbaijan agrees to this, we will also recognize it… , now we
are waiting for the Azerbaijani government to set up relationships
with the authorities of Karabakh and propose starting discussion â~@¦
the dialogue must begin without preconditions (from the interview in
the ). Nagorni Karabakh also thinks so. If Europe
wants to bring the authorities of Azerbaijan and Nagorni Karabakh to
the table of negotiations, this may, in fact, create an atmosphere
for the settlement of the conflict. Especially that parliamentary
relations, moving the Minsk process to the parliamentary plain of
NKR and Azerbaijan are concerned,â~@~] notices Manvel Sarghissian.