OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs Igor Popov of the Russian Federation, Stéphane Visconti of France, and Andrew Schofer of the United States of America and personal representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk who are in Armenian on a regional visit have met with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, ONA reports.
During the meeting, the issues on peaceful settlement of Nagorno Garabagh conflict have been discussed.
In the context of strengthening trust between the parties, the importance of taking actions to strengthen the ceasefire regime is highlighted.
The officials also touched upon the necessity to prepare populations to peace and the steps directed for this purpose.
The co-chairs also met with Armenian Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan.
Note that, the mediators will also visit the occupied Nagorno Garabagh region of Azerbaijan and Baku as well.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict entered its modern phase when the Armenian SRR made territorial claims against the Azerbaijani SSR in 1988.
A fierce war broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. As a result of the war, Armenian armed forces occupied some 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory which includes Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent districts (Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli and Zangilan), and over a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced people.
The military operations finally came to an end when Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in Bishkek in 1994.
Dealing with the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the OSCE Minsk Group, which was created after the meeting of the CSCE (OSCE after the Budapest summit held in December 1994) Ministerial Council in Helsinki on 24 March 1992. The Group’s members include Azerbaijan, Armenia, Russia, the United States, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Belarus, Finland and Sweden.
Besides, the OSCE Minsk Group has a co-chairmanship institution, comprised of Russian, the US and French co-chairs, which began operating in 1996.
Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 of the UN Security Council, which were passed in short intervals in 1993, and other resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly, PACE, OSCE, OIC, and other organizations require Armenia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from Nagorno-Karabakh.