BAKU: ‘Karabakh Conflict Settlement Should Be Removed From OSCE Mand

Nov 23 2011

News.Az interviews Azerbaijani MP, political expert Mubariz Gurbanli.

Paris has unofficially announced that Jacques Faure will be appointed
a new French co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group. Do personalities of
co-chairs play any role in terms of reaching progress in negotiating
process on Karabakh conflict?

The replacement of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs can not play a
decisive role in resolving the problem since the countries co-chairing
the Minsk Group play mediation role in negotiations within the OSCE
mandate, and diplomats working in this group act in compliance with
the instructions received from their countries and also in compliance
with the schedule set by the OSCE Chairman-in-Office.

Of course, the experience of the diplomat, a good knowledge of region’s
problems can have a positive impact the negotiating process.

But, in general, it is important that OSCE recognized Armenia as an
aggressor. However, the countries co-chairing the OSCE Minsk Group
have not demonstrated a similar position. In other words, OSCE Minsk
Group co-chairs- the U.S., France and Russia deal with the Karabakh
conflict on the basis of their interests.

Therefore, I believe that replacement of the OSCE Minsk Group
co-chairs will not have a serious impact on negotiating process on
the Karabakh conflict settlement. It is possible that appointment
of new diplomats as co-chair of OSCE Minsk Group can give a certain
impetus to negotiations and intensify shuttle diplomacy. But overall,
I do not predict replacement of co-chairs will have an impact on the
negotiating process.

To what extent Azerbaijan’s election as non-permanent member of the
UN Security Council reflects the policies pursued by the country in
past years?

Certainly, offensive diplomacy pursued by the President of Azerbaijan
yields fruits. If we look at the anatomy of the foreign policy
pursued by Azerbaijan, it becomes clear that country’s election as
non-permanent member of UN Security Council is an outcome of this
offensive diplomacy. The fact that 155 countries voted for Azerbaijan
is a success of Azerbaijan’s diplomacy.

This became possible due to offensive diplomacy pursued by Azerbaijan
in relation to Armenia and this is an obvious indicator of a change in
balance of power in international arena in favor of Baku. Of course,
Azerbaijan’s status of a non-permanent member of UN Security Council
offers superiority for the country.

Would it be appropriate for Azerbaijan to raise the issue of
Nagorno-Karabakh with the UN as a non-permanent member of the UN
Security Council?

Azerbaijan, as a nonpermanent member of UN Security Council, can
not include the issues that are directly related to the Karabakh
problem to the UN agenda. This can be done by other countries. But
Azerbaijan’s status as a non-permanent member of UN Security Council
will give Baku an opportunity to use UN platform to expose Armenia
aggressive policies.

The parties to the Karabakh conflict have stressed the need to change
format of OSCE Minsk Group lately. How appropriate it would be to
change format of the mediators at a current stage?

The OSCE has become similar to a swamp. Processes related to the
Karabakh conflict settlement create a swamp syndrome in the OSCE. In
this regard, there may be attempts to remove the Karabakh process
from the OSCE mandate.

As you know, UN Security Council is an authoritative organization
across the world dealing with peace issues. Only decisions made by
this structure are binding. Other international organizations issue
only declarative statements.

The reality is that all three co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group are
permanent members of UN Security Council. Therefore, one should not
expect that replacement of a veto-wielding UN Security Council member
in the OSCE by a secondary state will expedite the peace process. In
this case, there is only one way out of the situation prevailing
around the Karabakh conflict settlement. This is taking Karabakh
issue back to the UN Security Council.

This organization, in turn, must adopt the next – fifth resolution
in compliance with the four UN Security Council resolutions adopted
previously, and the UN Secretary-General, on his part, must appoint
a special envoy on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict.

Direct subordination of UN Secretary-General special envoy on
the Azerbaijani-Armenian conflict to the Security Council of this
international organization and to its General Assembly would help
increase diplomatic pressure on the aggressor. Otherwise, a change in
format of OSCE Minsk Group will not signify the changing situation in
terms of geopolitical interests. On the contrary, arrival of the new
influential countries to the OSCE Minsk Group will lead to further
confrontation of interests of states in the region.

Let me remind you that the UN Secretary-General undertook mediating
mission in the Iran-Iraq war. Therefore, given complexity of the
situation a well-known diplomat can be appointed as a UN Secretary
General envoy on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. In short, one
can cause more severe diplomatic blows to Armenia by appointing a
UN special envoy on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict and bringing
Karabakh issue for discussions in the UN Security Council and UN
General Assembly.

Azerbaijan has already reached a diplomatic success in the UN General
Assembly. As we know, General Assembly has already adopted decisions
on the Karabakh conflict. During the discussions held in the UN,
the Armenian side ended up in a deadlock while the Azerbaijani
diplomacy succeeded. Therefore, I believe that appointment of UN
Secretary-General special envoy on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict
can become one of the ways out of the current situation around
Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

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Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS