BAKU (Sputnik) – The status quo in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is neither reliable, sustainable nor acceptable, Azeri Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said Monday.
"The recent escalation in front-line has signaled that 'status quo' in the settlement of Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict may lead to violence and severe military clashes. Everyone [is] fed up with the status quo which is not reliable and remains unsustainable and unacceptable. Demilitarization and withdrawal of troops has to be ensured," Mammadyarov said at the Eastern Partnership Ministerial Foreign Affairs Meeting, as quoted by Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry.
The minister said that constructive negotiations could lead to peace and stability in the region.
However, Mammadyarov noted that he saw no indication of Armenia's intention to resolve the conflict by peaceful means. He called on the international community to scrutinize Armenia’s alleged violations of its commitments under agreements on non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
"This is critically important in view of previous and recently discovered notorious criminal cases related to trafficking radioactive materials from Armenia to potential third countries," Mammadyarov said.
The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, populated mostly by ethnic Armenians, proclaimed its independence from Azerbaijan in 1991 after the collapse of the Soviet Union. In 1992–1994, during a military conflict with the self-proclaimed republic supported by Armenia, Azerbaijan lost control over the region.
The conflict escalated in April, with Armenia and Azerbaijan accusing each other of provocations and attacks. On April 5, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire in Moscow following Russian mediation.