BAKU (Sputnik) — On May 16, Azerbaijani and Armenian leaders met with foreign ministers of the countries making up the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe's (OSCE) Minsk Group in the Austrian capital for the first time since the conflict’s recent escalation.
"The Armenian side once again distorts the essence of the Vienna meeting. The time for verbal games has long run out. The proposals put forward as outcomes of the Vienna meeting are interconnected with each other. The aim of the ceasefire regime is to pave the way for the start of comprehensive and substantive negotiations, to which Azerbaijan expressed its readiness," the press service told RIA Novosti.
According to the Azerbaijani ministry, Yerevan has to put an end to Armenia’s occupation and illegal presence of its troops in the Azerbaijani territories, which causes violations to the regime of cessation of hostilities.
The conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh began in 1988, when the autonomous region sought to secede from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic, before the latter proclaimed independence with the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. The warring sides agreed to a cessation of hostilities in 1994.
The violence in Nagorno-Karabakh, an Azerbaijani breakaway region with a predominantly Armenian population, escalated on April 2. Baku and Yerevan have accused each other of provoking hostilities that led to multiple deaths on both sides.