Press TV, Iran
April 29 2013

Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani has stressed Tehran's readiness
to mediate between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the Nagorno-Karabakh

In a Monday meeting with Secretary of Azerbaijan's National Security
Council Ramiz Mehdiyev, Larijani said that regional countries are
capable of solving their problems through close cooperation.

"In this regard, the Islamic Republic of Iran stresses its readiness to
contribute to the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh crisis," he said.

Larijani pointed to numerous cultural, religious and geographical
commonalities between Iran and Azerbaijan two countries and described
their relations as brotherly and friendly.

He underlined the significance of using the potentials of the two
countries to develop bilateral political, economic and cultural ties,
adding that Majlis supports any approach aimed at boosting cooperation
and relations based on mutual respect and common interests.

Mehdiyev, for his part, said that Iran is a friend of Azerbaijan and
there are deeply historical bonds between the people of the two states.

He warned against efforts by certain foreign countries to disturb
friendly relations between Tehran and Baku, urging the consolidation
of relations.

He also welcomed Iran's efforts to help the settlement of the
Nagorno-Karabakh dispute between Azerbaijan and Armenia.

Both Azerbaijan and Armenia claim the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh,
which is largely populated by Armenians but located in Azerbaijan.

Ethnic Armenian forces took control over the enclave which accounts
for 16 percent of Azerbaijan in the early 1990s during a six-year
war with the country that took place from February 1988 to May 1994.

The conflict left an estimated 30,000 people dead and one million
displaced before the two sides agreed to a cease-fire in 1994.

However, a peace accord has never been signed and the dispute still
remains unsettled.

Iran has on several occasions offered to intervene in the dispute.