Yerevan, Baku trade accusations in meetings with Minsk Group Co-Chairs

By Asbarez | Thursday, 22 September 2016

Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian meets with Minsk Group co-chairs in Belgrade in 2015

Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian meets with Minsk Group co-chairs in Belgrade in 2015

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)—The Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers traded accusations during their latest separate talks with U.S., Russian and French diplomats spearheading international efforts to end the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

The three co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group met with Edward Nalbandian and Elmar Mammadyarov in New York on the sidelines of the latest session of the UN General Assembly to discuss further steps in the peace process. They issued no joint statements afterwards.

“We look forward to progress on key issues,” James Warlick, the U.S. mediator, wrote on his Twitter page on Thursday. He did not elaborate.

The Armenian Foreign Ministry said Nalbandian and the three mediators discussed on Tuesday implementation of confidence-building measures that were agreed by the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents at their last two meetings held in May and June.

A ministry statement said Nalbandian accused Azerbaijan of refusing to honor those agreements aimed at preventing ceasefire violations around Karabakh and along the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. Baku is thus preventing “appropriate conditions” for progress towards a peaceful settlement, the Armenian minister said, according to the statement.

For his part, Mammadyarov reportedly accused the Armenian side of seeking to “disrupt the negotiation process” through “provocations” when he met Warlick, Russia’s Igor Popov and France’s Pierre Andrieu on Wednesday. The APA news agency cited him as complaining about Armenian military exercises which he said are being held near Karabakh.