Azeri President Outlines Conditions To Open Borders With Armenia


May 17 2010

MOSCOW, May 17 (Itar-Tass) — Azerbaijan’s president has voiced
conditions Armenia should meet so that Azerbaijan resumed relations
with it.

"If Armenia gives a positive response to the OSCE Minsk group’s
proposals and, on this basis, begins to withdraw its armed units from
the occupied Azerbaijani territories, Azerbaijan will open its borders
with Armenia, resume communications and thus large-scale peace and
security measure will be ensured in the region," Ilham Aliyev told
a news conference on the results of his talks with Turkish Prime
Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

According to the Azerbaijani president, his country has accepted
practically all intermediaries’ proposals with minor exceptions (the
Madrid document outlining the basic settlement principles). "We expect
the Armenian side to show a similar approach," he said, adding that
Armenia had yet provided no response to the intermediaries’ proposals
of six months ago.

"We consider it as Armenia’s attempt to temporise, not to
take important steps to settle the problem, and thus to have the
negotiating process last for years. But we will never agree to it,"
the Azerbaijani president said and stressed that "negotiations must
have certain frameworks, including in terms of time limits."

He accused Armenia of taking steps "breaking the peacekeeping process,"
each time a crucial moment comes.

"Regrettably, we see a similar picture now," Aliyev said and
urged Armenia to voice its position. "Either it (Armenia) gives
a positive answer to the proposals of Russia, the United State and
France (co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk group) and we come closer to the
problem settlement. Or it gives a negative answer and the negotiating
will be broken and the relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia will
enter a new stage," he stressed.