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BAKU: Azeri FM says Armenia ready to discuss stage-by-stage plan

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  • BAKU: Azeri FM says Armenia ready to discuss stage-by-stage plan

    Azeri minister says Armenia ready to discuss stage-by-stage plan

    ANS TV, Baku
    9 May 04

    [Presenter] The Russian co-chairman of the OSCE Minsk Group, Yuriy
    Merzlyakov, has said that Armenian President Robert Kocharyan and
    Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev will hold their next meeting in the
    Kazakh capital, Astana, in September. He said that the meeting would
    be held on the sidelines of a CIS summit.

    Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said that the date and
    venue of the presidents' next meeting will be known for certain after
    a meeting of the foreign ministers of the two countries due in
    Strasbourg. Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov and
    Armenian Foreign Minister Vardan Oskanyan will discuss the liberation
    of Azerbaijan's seven occupied districts in Strasbourg on 12 May. Here
    is Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov:

    [Mammadyarov, speaking to journalists] There will be a general
    exchange of opinions. I mean, the co-chairmen expressed their views in
    Prague, the Azerbaijani side expressed its views and the Armenian side
    expressed its views. We will again exchange our views in Strasbourg,
    and each side - Azerbaijan, Armenia and the co-chairmen - will once
    again discuss which path to take.

    As you know, the Azerbaijani president mentioned the liberation of
    seven districts and the opening of transport links. We suggest going
    this way so as the conflict is settled even quicker.

    [ANS journalist] Does this mean that Azerbaijan will propose that the
    principles of a stage-by-stage settlement plan be discussed along with
    some other elements?

    [Mammadyarov] Yes, exactly the state-by-stage plan. This is what we
    suggest because we know that our main task now is to return refugees
    and displaced persons to the liberated lands.

    [ANS journalist] Does Armenia agree to discuss this option?

    [Mammadyarov] Yes, there is a general feeling that Armenia is ready to
    discuss the stage-by-stage plan.