October 18, 2021

Azerbaijan is “ready” to start peace talks with Armenia, the president told France24.

Issued:

Exactly one year after the start of the war between Azerbaijan and Armenia for control of the Nagorno-Karabakh region, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev gave an exclusive interview to France 24 from the capital Baku. Aliyev said Azerbaijan was “ready to work on a future peace agreement” with Armenia, but warned that any move by Yerevan to regain territory lost in last year’s war There will be a strong reaction from the country.

The Azerbaijani president told France24 that the first meeting between the Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers in New York last week was a “good sign” that talks could resume and a peaceful solution could be found. He said he was ready to join the peace talks but regretted that the Armenian leadership had so far failed to respond “appropriately”. Aliyev added that he would not mind if the OCSE Minsk Group of Mediators (France, the United States and Russia) held a meeting with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pishinyan.

However, he issued a warning to Armenia, stressing that there were plans to regain territory lost in last year’s war. Nagorno-Karabakh He will face a strong reaction from his country. He claimed that the dispute between the two countries had been “resolved” once and for all and that there should be no return to the status quo. Aliyev also denied that he had any additional territorial claims to Armenia.

The Azerbaijani president insisted that the issue of granting some kind of sovereignty to the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which he had presented for years, was now “off the table” and that both the Armenian and OCSE Minsk groups of mediators The new reality must be accepted. .

Aliyev rejected Human Rights Watch’s claims that his country was holding and torturing Armenian prisoners of war, saying they had all been released. The president also vehemently denied that he had sent workers to attack Azerbaijani blogger Muhammad Mirzali, a refugee in France who had been severely stabbed in March.

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