On the eve of next week’s meeting in Washington, DC of Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers regarding Artsakh status and security issues, the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) called on Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to lift “arbitrary, outdated, and counter-productive restrictions” on travel and communication between the United States and the Republic of Artsakh. The ANCA’s request is consistent with the legislative aims of H.Res.190, a bipartisan resolution seeking the removal of these prohibitions and the full return of Artsakh to any and all negotiations regarding its future.
The ANCA letter, forwarded this morning to the Department of State, stressed that: “Azerbaijan’s attempts to limit U.S.-Artsakh dialogue, much like its reckless efforts to exclude Artsakh from full participation in OSCE negotiations, are clearly intended to serve the Aliyev regime’s domestic political purposes, but, just as clearly, hinder U.S. diplomacy, and hold back the progress we would all like to see toward a durable and democratic peace between Artsakh and Azerbaijan.”
The letter also recalled that: “Artsakh signed the 1994 Bishkek Protocol, the cease-fire agreement that has, despite breaches by Baku, remained in place for a quarter century,” concluding that: “Artsakh must be a full stakeholder in any and all discussions regarding its future.”
The bipartisan U.S.-Artsakh Travel and Communication Resolution (H.Res.190), introduced in March by Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ), currently has 20 cosponsors.