Armenia’s Parliament Speaker Expresses His Concerns In A Letter To N

29.07.2010 18:24

Speaker of the National assembly of Armenia Hovik Abrahamyan sent
a letter to NATO Parliamentary Assembly President John Tanner. The
letter reads:

“Dear Mr. Tanner,

I am addressing you in regard to a possible report on the
Nagorno-Karabakh issue to be prepared for the discussion at the NATO
Parliamentary Assembly. To be frank, I am surprised that such a step
might have been taken without proper consultations with members of
the Armenian Delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

As is known, currently the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process runs
under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs representing
USA, France and Russia. It is our strong conviction that given the
confidentiality, specificity and delicacy of the negotiations, the
initiatives held in formats other than the Minsk Group co-chairmanship,
even with a good intent, include a great danger of jeopardizing the
negotiation process and undermining the mediation efforts. Therefore,
any initiative on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution requires
prior consultations with the Co-Chair States of the Minsk Group,
having in view that the USA and France are both NATO members.

The attempts of Azerbaijan to raise the Nagorno-Karabakh issue within
different international formats are aimed at advertising Azerbaijan’s
own perception of the conflict resolution with disregard of the
entirety of principles proclaimed by the Co-Chairs as the basis for
the conflict resolution. It is worth mentioning that the Co-Chair
countries voted against the resolution proposed by Azerbaijan at
the UN General Assembly session in March 2008, by stating that the
“resolution selectively propagates only some of the principles [of
the conflict resolution] excluding others.”

Just a few days ago, exactly on July 17, Minister of Foreign Affairs
of the Russian Federation Sergei Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs
of France Bernard Kouchner, and Deputy Secretary of State of the
United States of America James Steinberg issued a statement where they
reconfirmed the principles and elements of the conflict resolution
stated by the Presidents of the OSCE Minsk Group’s Co-Chair countries
at the G8 Summit convened on June 26, 2010 in Muskoka. They once
again stressed the point that the mentioned principles and elements
have been conceived as an integrated whole and that any attempt to
give preferences over other principles would make it impossible to
achieve a balanced solution.

With due respect to an authoritative organization like the NATO
Parliamentary Assembly, we consider it our duty to remind that
in non-distant past a NATO PA report on Nagorno-Karabakh provoked
selective references, unsubstantiated interpretations, and wrong
speculations. I believe that the report in no way has contributed to
the creation of a favorable environment for the settlement process. I
do not see any reason why this new initiative may yield a different
result. It was due to the clear understanding of the sensitivity
of the issue that Secretary General Rasmussen and other NATO high
ranking officials voiced their strong support for the efforts of the
OSCE Minsk Group on different occasions and stressed that NATO did
not have direct involvement in the issue nor did not play a role of
its own in the mediation process.

Based on these concerns, Honorable Mr. President, I would like to
strongly advise and suggest that the NATO Parliamentary Assembly
refrains from addressing the issue on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. ”

From: A. Papazian

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