OSCE Minsk Group Cochairmen Stress The Need To Improve Significantly

OSCE MINSK GROUP COCHAIRMEN STRESS THE NEED TO IMPROVE SIGNIFICANTLY THE ATMOSPHERE OF NEGOTIATIONS

/ARKA/
October 25, 2011
YEREVAN

YEREVAN, October 25, /ARKA/. The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk
Group (Ambassadors Bernard Fassier of France, Robert Bradtke of
the United States, and Igor Popov of the Russian Federation) and
Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk (Personal Representative of the OSCE
Chairperson-in-Office) issued a statement after visiting Armenia ,
Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan stressing the need for substantial
improvement of atmosphere in the talks to settle the conflict.

The statement says, particularly, that the cochairmen traveled
October 21-24 to Yerevan, Nagorno-Karabakh, and Baku and met with
presidents Sargsyan and Aliyev, and with the de facto authorities
in Nagorno-Karabakh.

The Co-Chairs stressed to the sides the need to improve significantly
the atmosphere of negotiations, increase trust, and strengthen
implementation of the ceasefire to allow further progress toward
reaching a peaceful settlement. The Co-Chairs offered several proposals
for measures to enhance confidence in different fields. The sides
agreed in principle on the draft mechanism to investigate incidents
along the front lines that the Co-Chairs proposed in April, and which
presidents Aliyev, Sargsyan, and Medvedev agreed to pursue in their
March joint statement in Sochi.

The Co-Chairs also met separately with His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme
Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, and with Sheykhulislam
Allahshukur Pashazade, Grand Mufti and Chairman of the Caucasus Muslim
Board, to discuss the necessity of preparing the populations for a
just, lasting, and peaceful settlement.

On October 22, the Co-Chairs crossed the Line of Contact by foot for
the fourth time in the past fourteen months. This crossing highlighted
again that the Line is not a permanent barrier between neighboring
peoples, and demonstrated that military coordination is possible when
all the sides are willing.

The Co-Chairs will return to the region in late November to continue
their work with the sides to develop the measures described above and
to determine next steps to pave the way for future meetings between
the sides.

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