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Foreign Affairs

Tangled knot of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

– The crisis in Nagorno-Karabakh dates back to the period before the collapse of former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) in 1991.

In 1921, Soviet Union, within the framework of its overall policies, conceded Karabakh to Azerbaijan, and the region has been part of Azeri territorial integrity since then, former Iranian ambassador to Baku Mohsen Pakaein wrote in the official Iranian newspaper, IRAN, on Thursday.

It happened while the majority of those living in Karabakh region were Armenians.

Short after the collapse of Soviet Union, the autonomous region of Karabakh announced its independence in 1992 with the help of Armenia; though its soil was still part of Azerbaijan.

No countries - even Armenia - have officially recognized independence of that region yet which has now turned into a serious disputed issue.

The issue of Karabakh has been taken into consideration from two dimensions, the first relates to seven cities which belong to Azerbaijan and have been occupied by Armenia, and the second is the legal aspect of the issue.

All mediation efforts already taken by the United Nations, the Minsk Group led by Russia, France and US and neighboring countries like Iran to end the dispute over the region have not been fruitful yet because the occupied cities had not been freed.

UN Security Council has issued four resolutions calling on Armenia to free the Azeri cities first.

Conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh continued, expanded from battle fields to the cities, targeted intentionally or unintentionally residential units and led to killing of the civilians.

Recently, Russia entered talks with foreign ministers of both Armenia and Azerbaijan to end the conflict through ceasefire, but the truce was broken just half an hour later.

Iran has been among the first in the region which made efforts to settle the conflict through dialogue.

Iran's principled policy follows friendly relations with neighbors and respects countries' territorial integrity.

About three weeks ago, Azerbaijan and Armenia came into a conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, a conflict which started in 1988 and led to military conflict in 1992.

Source: Islamic Republic News Agency - IRNA


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