YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–A spokesman for Levon Ter-Petrosyan warned the leaders of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic–Tuesday–against what he termed interference in Armenia’s internal affairs. The warning follows statemen’s made by senior Nagorno-Karabakh officials that blamed Ter-Petrosyan for accepting the most recent peace plan put forward by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s Minsk Group.
Nagorno-Karabakh President Arkadi Ghoukassian said Monday that Armenian Prime Minister Robert Kocharian–who has repeatedly spoken out against the plan–"has no right to step down" right now. Ghoukassian said rumors about Kocharian’s imminent resignation are the result of the "political atmosphere" caused by Ter-Petrosyan’s conciliatory remarks on Karabakh made last fall.
Last week a senior Nagorno-Karabakh legislator indicated that Ter-Petrosyan will risk losing office if he continues with his Karabakh policy.
Presidential press-secretary Levon Zurabian told RFE/RL Tuesday that Karabakh officials are free to take position on any issue but "attempts to meddle in Armenia’s internal politics are unacceptable." Zurabian said–however–that Yerevan will not release any official statement to that effect. Karabakh Armenia’s have rejected the Minsk Group’s "phased" plan–which would delay resolution of the region’s status until the last stage of the peace process.