YEREVAN (ArmRadio)—“We see certain positive progress toward reforms and democracy in the South Caucasus countries, but flashpoints of tensions and conflicts delay these processes,” the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Latvian Foreign Minister Audronius Ažubalis said in his interview to DELFI news agency.
The OSCE Chairman-in-Office said his visit to the region was useful in terms of collecting necessary information and evaluating opportunities in the South Caucasus to move the conflict settlements forward.
“Regarding the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, I was sure that a certain environment was created for the conflict resolution progress after the presidents’ meeting in Sochi. The Minsk Group co-chairs are working despite criticism. The co-chairs are criticized because critics are unaware of their activity,” said OSCE Chairman.
Ažubalis added that the Russian president’s mediatory mission in the settlement of this conflict creates serious basis for progress. “But the Minsk Group will not solve the problems of the sides. The Minsk Group can propose a plan, but no one can move the resolution process forward, if the sides fail to demonstrate necessary political will.”
The OSCE Chairman-in-Office also made comments on the sides’ reaction to his proposal to pull out the snipers from the contact line between the troops: “I proposed to Armenia to pull out its snipers from the contact line, but both sides refused my proposal. The sides reached an agreement in Sochi to start consultations on mechanisms of investigation of the incidents at the contact line. This is positive,” Ažubalis stated.