Nkr: A Fact-Finding Visit With Socio-Economic Bias


Azat Artsakh Newspaper [NKR]
Nagorno Karabakh Republic
03 May, 2010

So in the stuff of co-chairmanship of OSCE MG an expected rotation
took place – Igor Popov took the place of Jury Merzlyakov on the
post of the co-chairman of MG from Russia. As it was expected, it was
followed by a so-called legal trip of the new Russian intermediary,
who after Armenia with fact-finding visit on April 29th arrived
in the Nagorno-Karabakh and this very day was accepted by the NKR
president Bako Sahakyan. Under avaricious lines of the official
press release it is impossible to consider details of negotiations
of the new Russian co-chairman of the Minsk group of OSCE with the
NKR president which, according to diplomatic practice, have passed
in confidential conditions. After the meeting in conversation with
journalists Igor Popov was not verbose and, that also is explainable.

In negotiating process on the Nagorno-Karabakh he is a new person,
and has arrived, as has already been told, "to show himself" and
to listen to others – that it was easier "to enter into a theme".
However, the Russian diplomat also did not begin to hide, that his
first meeting with the NKR President had legal character. He did not
begin to hide that during conversation with the President besides
political subjects, not in a smaller measure there was a question of
social and economic development of Nagorno-Karabakh. Here again he
had much to listen. It is clear, that the President Bako Sahakyan has
presented to the new co-chairman a political situation in region and a
position of authorities of the NKR on the Karabakh problem. A position,
which has been already formulated accurately enough for a long time
and does not suppose return to the Soviet past. But nevertheless, as
Igor Popov admitted, generally interlocutors spoke about questions
of social and economic character. That is about development of
economy of the NKR as a whole, and about prospects of functioning
of Stepanakert’s airport, in particular. At first sight it may seem
strange, that at the meeting with the co-chairman of the Minsk group
it was more spoken about social and economic questions. But only at
first sight. If to ponder, there is a certain law in it, and, probably,
Bako Sahakyan with Igor Popov did not so casually make a list towards
social and economic life of the Nagorno-Karabakh. As negotiations
by negotiations, but the NKR in its development cannot stand on a
place and wait, as they say, at the weather sea. Especially, when the
partner in these negotiations is Azerbaijan, which the aggressive
actions far from common sense contradicting norms of international
law and principles of settlement of the Karabakh conflict, does these
negotiations simply senseless and unpromising. Here recently the
president Aliev has burst a series of the statements which essence
consists that definitive and even intermediate, temporary status of
the Nagorno-Karabakh is possible "only and only within the limits
of territorial integrity of Azerbaijan". And it thus, that the right
of people of the Nagorno-Karabkh to self-determination is recognized
by one of major principles of the resolution of the conflict. After
all even in the NKR ambiguously perceived Madrid principles provide
legally obliging will of people of the Nagorno-Karabakh at definition
of the political status. But, as it is known, the Azerbaijan president,
not having some serious arguments, always rather originally treats
international law which serves for him only as propaganda cover for
nothing of the proved claims on the Nagorno-Karabakh, creating thereby
artificial problem called till now by the Nagorno-Karabakh.

Meanwhile, this problem only Azerbaijan has, but not the
Nagorno-Karabakh and consequently Baku should be interested in
constructive negotiations that, however, now it is not observed. For
this reason we will return to visit to Stepanakert of a new Russian
co-chairman of the Minsk group of OSCE, who in Stepanakert has noticed,
that owing to the clear reasons he cannot speak about nuances of
the process of settlement, and now while he is busy by problem
studying. Well, objectively it is so, therefore it is necessary to
hope, that in the course of full and all-round studying of the set
theme he will manage to find a right answer on a question "who is
who?" and what are true interests of the parties of the conflict, in
compliance with what intermediary activity will be constructed. For
now… While the Russian diplomat has shared opinion of the NKR
president on necessity of participation of Artsakh in negotiating
process and, true to traditions of more skilled colleagues on
co-chairmanship in the Minsk group, also has declared, that at certain
stage the Nagorno-Karabakh should join negotiations. We have already
had a chance to write, that similar statements have become original
ritual procedure for intermediaries, however it would be desirable
to think, that this tradition will be really broken, and co-chairmen
will take practical measures for returning of the Karabakh party
to a negotiating table. If, of course, wish the real and long-term
decision of a problem. At least, Igor Popov has expressed readiness to
use the best efforts to settle the conflict as soon as possible. The
God helper…

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