VARTAN OSKANIAN: PRESIDENTS OF ARMENIA AND AZERBAIJAN POSITIVELY ASSESSED THE MINSK TALKS

Public Radio, Armenia
Nov 29 2006

The Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan positively assessed the
process of negotiations held in Minsk, RA Foreign Minister Vartan
Oskanian told the journalists at "Zvartnots" airport.

In his words, following the meeting Robert Kocharyan and Ilham
Aliev emphasized the constructive nature of the talks. The Foreign
Minister informs that during the meeting in Minsk the attention of
the Presidents was mainly focused on those points of the document
on which no agreement has been reached. "I cannot definitely assert
whether any progress has been registered or not, but both Presidents
positively assessed the meeting in regard to both the atmosphere and
the constructive approaches. I think that during the coming days
the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan will thoroughly analyze
everything and will give exact instructions to the Foreign Minister,"
noted Vartan Oskanian.

Turning to the negotiation process on the settlement of the Karabakh
conflict in 2006, the Foreign Minister mentioned that the trends are
positive. In Vartan Oskanian's opinion, despite the fact that there has
been no serious breakthrough, backward steps have not been registered,
either. "I do believe that in this period the negotiation process has
not suffered, and we only have to wait for the next steps in 2007. At
this point I will not speak about the content of yesterday's talks. I
can say only that the agenda included questions not agreed upon,"
Vartan Oskanian underlined. "I think that the annual consolations
of the OSCE Foreign Ministers scheduled December 3-4 we provide the
opportunity to sum up the negotiation process in the course of the
whole year. In 2007 and 2008 nationwide elections are expected in
both Armenia and Azerbaijan. It may have an impact on the negotiation
process in regard to time, but not content and I'm sure we'll continue
our meetings," the Foreign Minister concluded.