Nov 28 2012

Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan has accused Azerbaijan of distorting
the essence of the conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, escalating the
arms race, and regularly shelling Nagorno-Karabakh districts and
Armenia's border area.

"Azerbaijan is trying to picture the problem of Karabakh as a
religious conflict at various forums, which has nothing to do with the
reality. Armenia's warm and friendly relations with numerous Islamic
countries shows our openness for dialogue with various religions and
civilizations. Nevertheless, unfortunately, by manipulating the factor
of Islamic solidarity, Azerbaijan has made some success in forming a
distorted position regarding the Karabakh problem," Sargsyan said at
a meeting with the chairman of the Lebanese parliament and its members.

Sargsyan noted that, despite a ceasefire, Azerbaijan is "continuing
to shell the borders of not only Nagorno-Karabakh but also Armenia,"
the Armenian presidential press service told Interfax.

"In response to the international community's efforts toward resolving
the issue peacefully, Azerbaijan is continuing its militant propaganda
and unprecedented stockpiling of weapons," he said.

The Azeri authorities "are continuing to cultivate hostility and
hatred toward Armenians among their people," he said.

"How else can you interpret the Azeri president's statement that
enemy number one for Azerbaijan is the global Armenianism," he said.

"With this nearsighted policy, the people of Azerbaijan will never
be ready for peaceful coexistence, even if an agreement is reached on
settling the problem. Neither Armenia nor, I believe, Azerbaijan are
going to leave the region, and so the prospect of a peaceful South
Caucasus is not an option but an imperative," he said.

Sargsyan is currently paying an official visit to Lebanon.

va jv