Azeri opposition leader accuses government of defeatist policy

3 Sep 04

Baku, 3 September: A round table on "Repression of the Karabakh lovers
and the public attitude" was held today at the headquarters of the
[opposition] People's Front of Azerbaijan Party [PFAP, reformers wing].

PFAP Chairman and MP Ali Karimli condemned the arrest of the [Karabakh
Liberation Organization] KLO activists and said that giving the
go-ahead to Armenian officers' planned visit to Azerbaijan was
tantamount to a defeatist policy vis-a-vis the enemy country. The
MP said that since Armenian aggression did not cause any problem
to cooperation with NATO, the denial of entry to several of this
country's officers to Azerbaijan would not affect Azerbaijan's
relations with NATO.

Karimli demanded on behalf of the public that the authorities give up
this policy and rule out any kind of cooperation with Armenia until
the latter pulled out of Azerbaijan's occupied territories. He also
demanded that the authorities prevent officers of the occupation army
from attending international events held in Azerbaijan and release the
KLO activists who have been illegally convicted for expressing their
civic position. The PFAP chairman also said that it was important
that the media proceed from the national interests when covering the
KLO members' arrest.