YEREVAN (Yerkir)—The statement on Karabakh issued by the presidents of France, the US and Russia over the weekend is a direct message to Armenia urging concessions and reflects only the interests of Azerbaijan, said Armenian Revolutionary Federation parliamentary bloc chairman, Vahan Hovannesian in an interview with Yerkir on Monday.
He explained that the statement, made at the G8 summit in Canada, appeases Azerbaijan by calling for the “withdrawal from occupied territories,” and leaves the final solution to Karabakh’s status nebulous at best.
Hovannesian also expressed surprise at the immediate embracing of the statement as a positive step in the peace process.
“I am surprised at what is our foreign ministry expressing its support? What in this announcement has satisfied him,” asked Hovannesian, who pointed out inconsistencies between the Russian and the English versions of the statement.
Hovannesian explained that the Russian text clearly states that the status of Karabakh will be chosen by its residents, while the English version does not draw that distinction.
He said foreign ministry spokesperson Tigran Balayan had expressed that “the same conclusions can be derived from both versions by the foreign minister.”
The ARF’s political affairs director, Giro Manoyan, said the presidential statement was incomplete on many fronts.
“The statement was incomplete in several fronts. First of all, the fact that the presidents failed to make any mention of last week’s attack by the Azerbaijani side signals that they are not worried about the issue,” said Manoyan who also reiterated the ARF’s opposition to the so-called Madrid Principles that are being used as the basis for the OSCE Minsk Group mediated peace talks.