Sat, 22 Sep 2018

OSCE Minsk Group "concerned" over loss of life in Karabakh

12 Feb 2018, 18:07 GMT+10

PanARMENIAN.Net - The mediators of the OSCE Minsk Group have expressed 'deep concern' over the recent loss of life on the line of contact between Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh) and Azerbaijan.

An Armenian soldier of the Karabakh army, Hayk Kalantaryan (b. 1998) was killed in Azerbaijan's crossborder fire on February 7.

Igor Popov of Russia, Stephane Visconti of France, and Andrew Schofer of the United States of America, together with the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk, met Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents Ilham Aliyev and Serzh Sargsyan in Yerevan on February 7 and 9, respectively. Visiting Baku and Yerevan, they also held consultations with the foreign ministers of both countries. The co-chairs also traveled to Karabakh on February 9-11 to meet with the authorities there and visited specific locations in the Zangelan, Kubatly, Agdam, Lachin, and Kelbajar districts.

"The co-chairs underscored the importance of fulfilling, in good faith, all commitments undertaken during the October 2017 Summit in Geneva and at previous summits, in particular, Vienna and St. Petersburg," the Minsk Group said in a statement.

"The co-chairs expressed deep concern over the recent loss of life on the line of contact. The co-chairs call upon the sides to take additional steps to reduce tensions, as agreed in Geneva, and to respect the ceasefire. The Co-Chairs also call upon the sides to refrain from inflammatory statements and provocative actions.

"The co-chairs reiterate their commitment to helping the sides find a peaceful solution to the conflict based on the core principles of the Helsinki Act, including the non-use of force, territorial integrity, and the equal rights and self-determination of peoples."

Also, the mediators welcomed the parties' expressed intention to continue intensive negotiations, taking into account the current electoral period.

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