01.02.2010 19:13 GMT+04:00

/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Since the beginning of the Nagorno-Karabakh
conflict, Iran believes that the problem can be solved only by
regional countries, Iranian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Mohammad Bagir
Behrami stated.

"Iran thinks that a country far from the region only pursues its
own interests and perceives the conflict as a way to realize its
interests. Non-regional countries want to enhance their prestige in
the region, as well as in the energy sector and when dealing with
ethnic issues.

>From this point of view, the conflicting parties should solve the
problem through an independent decision. Iran has conditions for a
positive influence on the discussions over the conflict for various
reasons. First, the Iran Islamic Republic is the closest country to
the conflict zone and it is aware of the conflict's causes. Moreover,
the country worked on a just solution to the problem in the past.

Since the early stage of the conflict, Iran has sought to remove
obstacles preventing the conflicting parties to achieve a result that
can suit both sides.

Any agreement reached in the region, directly or indirectly affects
Iran. Therefore, Iran must join these discussions as an honest
mediator. Iran has a very good potential to hold discussions between
the conflicting parties.

Of course, Iran cannot remain indifferent to a conflict near its
borders. Now, the region has become a place for non-regional countries
to square their accounts.

Iran offers to view the realities of the problem and study the factors
contributing to the prolongation of the conflict. Iran believes
in honest mediation through protecting the countries' territorial
integrity and mutual respect, and may take positive steps to discuss
the conflict with the parties involved in it.

In any case, Iran wants to resolve the conflict through discussions
and mutual understanding, and considering conscience in the conflict
resolution is a condition," Trend News cited the Ambassador as saying.

The conflict between Nagorno Karabakh and Azerbaijan broke out in
1988 as result of the ethnic cleansing the latter launched in the
final years of the Soviet Union. The Karabakh War was fought from
1991 to 1994. Since the ceasefire in 1994, sealed by Armenia, NKR and
Azerbaijan, most of Nagorno Karabakh and several regions of Azerbaijan
around it (the security zone) remain under the control of NKR defense
army. Armenia and Azerbaijan are holding peace talks mediated by the
OSCE Minsk Group up till now.