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The international recognition of Artsakh will contribute to the strengthening of security and peace in the South Caucasus region. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh Republic), Masis Mayilian, on Friday stated this at the “Cooperation for Justice and Peace” Forum of Artsakh Friends, in capital city Stepanakert.

The FM familiarized the discussants with the history of Artsakh. He noted that the decision on Artsakh’s self-determination was made in accordance with international and domestic law, and it became a response to Azerbaijan’s constant violations of human rights, large-scale ethnic cleansing, renunciation of dialogue, and use of force to resolve the matter. Mayilian recalled that under those conditions, the creation of a state was the most optimal avenue.

In his words, the signing of the ceasefire agreement in 1994 had inspired hope to open the way for Artsakh’s international recognition and the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, but the respective peace process was hampered by Azerbaijan’s refusal to resolve the matter pacifically. As per Artsakh’s FM, by obstructing to restoring the full format of negotiations, renouncing confidence-building measures, continuing the arms race, threatening with a new war, and distorting the essence of the conflict, Azerbaijan impedes the efforts of the mediators. Moreover, according to Mayilian, Azerbaijan pursues a policy of isolation and preaching hatred, and deepening the chasm and delaying the possibility of a decision. He added that Baku shows no sign of compromise and reconsideration of its approaches.

The Artsakh FM also said that in response to Azerbaijan’s actions, the Artsakh authorities continue their efforts to smoothen international cooperation. As per Mayilian, several documents have been adopted since 2012, numerous Australian and US states have recognized Artsakh’s independence, friendship agreements have been signed with more than twenty cities, and various projects have been implemented with the help of sister cities.

The minister stressed that the recognition of Artsakh does not hinder the efforts of the mediators, and it fully complies with the spirit of the negotiations. According to Mayilian, the mediators have noted that Artsakh’s status issue should be resolved by the population, and international recognition would help in a final settlement.

“With its peace policy in the region, Artsakh has shown that it has an important role in the ‘architecture’ of peace, the FM highlighted. “Recognition will allow the use of soft power and is important from a human rights perspective. Human rights can’t be violated, and human rights can’t be curtailed simply because the people of Karabakh are living in an unrecognized country. One can’t limit the development of state institutions with the expectation of settlement.”

In Mayilian’s words, the Artsakh state institutions have stood the test of time and proved their viability. According to him, even during the war, the Artsakh people were able to rebuild their economy from scratch, create and strengthen state institutions, make efforts to conduct high-level elections, and ensure freedom of speech.

Furthermore, as per the FM, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Artsakh has launched the submission of national reports on the implementation of international agreements, and has already circulated at the UN for the first time the report on the implementation of civil rights. He added that Artsakh has joined the UN Sustainable Development Initiatives, within the framework of which a national sustainable development council has been established in Artsakh.

“Artsakh has gone through a great number of ordeals,” Masis Mayilian concluded. “But it has remained true to its objectives.”

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