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More Armenian-Azerbaijani Talks Planned


Russia -- President Dmitry Medvedev (C) at a meeting with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts Serzh Sarkisian (R) and Ilham Aliyev in Sochi, 23Jan2012

Russia -- President Dmitry Medvedev (C) at a meeting with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts Serzh Sarkisian (R) and Ilham Aliyev in Sochi, 23Jan2012

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said on Monday that he will again meet with his Armenian counterpart Edward Nalbandian this month to discuss preparations for an Armenian-Azerbaijani summit which international mediators hope will revive the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process.

Mammadyarov made the announcement one week after he and Nalbandian held separate talks with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Washington. The Azerbaijani minister went on to meet with U.S., Russian and French diplomats co-chairing the OSCE Minsk Group in London.

The three mediators visited Baku and Yerevan late last month. They said they are now “working intensively” with the conflicting parties to organize a face-to-face meeting of the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents.

“The mediators are continuing to prepare for a meeting of the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan,” Regnum quoted Mammadyarov as telling journalists in Baku. “But we want it to be substantive and not for the sake of a meeting.”

According to the Azerbaijani Trend news agency, Mammadyarov said he and Nalbandian plan to “comprehensively discuss” the preparations for the Armenian-Azerbaijani summit.

Presidents Ilham Aliyev and Serzh Sarkisian most recently met in the Russian city of Sochi in January 2012. The talks were hosted by then Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. In a joint written statement issued there, Aliyev and Sarkisian pledged to intensify their efforts to agree on the Basic Principles of a Karabakh settlement put forward by the mediators.

However, the conflicting parties have since made no progress towards bridging their differences on the proposed peace accord. “It is critical that all the parties … try to find a way to help break the impasse,” Kerry told Nalbandian last week.
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