The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry commented on the statement of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs on upcoming meeting between Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan.
The press service of Foreign Ministry told ONA that the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs had their proposals on the meeting between the Azerbaijani President and the Armenian PM: "The proposals were made by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs on the meeting between the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Prime Minister of Armenia. We would like to note that Azerbaijan is committed to the negotiation process and is always ready for substantive negotiations. The Azerbaijani side supports the efforts of the Minsk Group co-chairs to resolve the conflict through result-oriented and intensive negotiations. As it is known, until now President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan met 3 times and Ministers of Foreign Affairs met 4 times.
This statement of the Minsk Group co-chairs is a signal sent to Armenia and we welcome it. President Ilham Aliyev brought the position of Azerbaijan on this regard to the attention of the co-chairs while receiving them recently. The negotiations on the resolution of the conflict are held between Armenia and Azerbaijan. The format of the negotiations remains unchanged. Attempts to involve the so-called regime established in the occupied territories of our country and to change the format are unacceptable.
In the statement of the Minsk Group co-chairs the steps to be taken to resolve the conflict are emphasized. One of the first steps here is the liberation of the territories surrounding the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan and return of forcibly displaced persons to their former places of residence.
Regarding the status of Nagorno-Karabakh, we would like to underline that this can be a subject of discussion without undermining the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan has repeatedly stated its position in this regard, highlighting that the status of Nagorno-Karabakh within the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan should be determined by both communities of this region - the Azerbaijani and the Armenian communities. As it is known, the principle of self-determination of peoples should not violate the principle of territorial integrity of states. In the statement of the co-chairs the Helsinki Final Act is taken as a basis. This document states that "the participating States will respect the equal rights of peoples and their right to self-determination, acting at all times in conformity with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and with the relevant norms of international law, including those relating to territorial integrity of States."
When it comes to the interested parties involved in the negotiation process, these are the Azerbaijani and the Armenian communities of the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan and these communities have equal in rights."