BAKU (Itar-Tass)–Azerbaijan expressed concern over the development of military cooperation between Russia and Armenia–as well as the extension of the Russian military presence on the territory of its neighbor and in the South Caucasus–in general–an Azeri foreign ministry announcement reflected Monday. The foreign ministry also regarded the Russian military expansion as a factor hindering the establishment of peace–stability and security in the region.
The document noted that the pretext for such a statement was a recent visit to Armenia by the Commander of Air Force of Russia Colonel-General Karnukov–during which the sides reached a number of bilateral agreemen’s in the field of military cooperation.
The announcement alleged that the strengthening of Armenian-Russian military cooperation was taking place while Armenian armed forces continued to occupy 20 percent of Azeri territory..
The statement appeal to the leadership in Russia to suspend the implementation of the Russian- Armenian treaty on military cooperation–signed on August 29–1997–until the final resolution of the Karabakh conflict.