Armenian government must try to ensure Stepanakert-Baku dialogue - Mirzoyan

The Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan has said that the Armenian government is trying to achieve only one thing vis-a-vis the population of Nagorno-Karabakh in the ongoing Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process, namely the creation of a mechanism for Stepanakert-Baku dialogue.

On Monday (5 June), responding to a question from the Hayastan faction MP Arthur Khachatryan on whether the de facto authorities in Nagorno-Karabakh had authorised the government of Armenia to negotiate on their behalf, Mirzoyan replied that "we haven’t received a mandate by the people of Nagorno-Karabakh to negotiate their future. And subsequently we don’t have the right to determine their status. We aren’t even aspiring or trying to do so."

"The only thing we are trying to ensure in the Armenia-Azerbaijan normalisation process is the following: we consider that this normalisation cannot be realistic, complete, lasting and sustainable if a mechanism for dialogue isn’t created as part of this normalisation where the people of Nagorno Karabakh and the official Baku can have dialogue, discuss and negotiate around all the issues which are of the interest and importance to the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, for their future," Mirzoyan said.

On some of the issues which are understood to be outstanding, such as the rights and security of the population of Nagorno-Karabakh and reported disruptions to gas and electricity supplies, the Armenian FM said "we all know the situation in Nagorno Karabakh. These issues must be discussed and addressed by the bodies and authorised institutions elected by the people of Nagorno Karabakh. We must try to ensure the start of that dialogue, the mechanism and platform."

Total area of countries will not be in the peace treaty, says Mirzoyan

At the same joint committee debates on the 2022 budget report, Mirzoyan also touched on the question of mutual recognition of Armenia's and Azerbaijan's territorial integrity, saying that the final peace treaty will not mention the size of the territories of Armenia and Azerbaijan because such declarations are "political statements".

"These statements are about Armenia not having territorial demands from Azerbaijan and Azerbaijan not having territorial demands from Armenia," Mirzoyan said. "I don’t believe that you think that we should include or see this with mentioning such an area  in the future treaty on establishing relations or any other document."

Despite assurances reportedly made during private negotiations between Armenia and Azerbaijan from the latter's president Ilham Aliyev on his country's recognition of the territorial integrity of Armenia's 29,800 square kilometers, Mirzoyan said that the current lack of a public declaration of this from Baku is causing concern.

"Naturally, Azerbaijan isn’t objecting, it claims to recognise Armenia’s territorial integrity. The mentioning of these numbers was an additional clarification mechanism. This hasn’t been denied by Azerbaijan, but there is a need for a public confirmation. Otherwise we continue to be concerned that Azerbaijan, with its policy, has territorial claims against Armenia," said Mirzoyan.

Peace treaty possible by the end of the year, says Grigoryan

Separately, in an interview with Armenian Public Television published on Monday, the Secretary of the Security Council Armen Grigoryan said that a peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan could be possible by the end of the year, if the current intensity of the talks is maintained.

Following the 1 June meeting between between Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev in Chisinau, the Russian, Armenian and Azerbaijani deputy prime ministers met in Moscow on 2 June, while Mirozyan and his Azerbaijani counterpart are due to meet in Washington D.C. on 12 June.

This will be followed by another meeting of PM Pashinyan and President Aliyev in Brussels on 21 July.

source: with agencies
photo: civilnet